October 29, 2020

Conroe’s Handy Guide To Pantry Pest Control

Some of the nastiest pest problems we have to deal with are the kind that can contaminate food sources or the areas where we eat and prepare meals. Foraging pantry pests are a nuisance for many property owners but, armed with the right knowledge, you can stay one step ahead of these invasive bugs

cigarette beetle on tobacco

Common Pantry Pests To Watch Out For

First, you have to know what to be on the lookout for. To solve a problem, you have to identify it first, so use these descriptions to identify which pantry pests might have moved in:

  • Ants: Odds are you already know what these small, foraging bugs look like. While there are many varieties of invasive ants, they all have segmented bodies with six legs and bent antennae.
  • Cigarette beetles: These brown, oval-shaped insects are known for contaminating stored tobacco. While that makes them a problem for vendors and markets, they will also infest homes and forage for other fibrous foods.
  • Indian meal moths: Notorious for contaminating starchy products and grains, Indian meal moths are destructive in their worm-like larval stage.
  • Drugstore beetles: Similar in appearance to cigarette beetles, these guys are typically darker brown in color and are known for attacking stored grain sources.

How Do Infestations Start?

Knowing how to spot these pests is only one part of responsible pest control. The other more important half of the equation is knowing how pest infestations start and what you can do to limit attractants. It’s important to know that pantry pest populations often start outdoors. Mature adult bugs then find their way inside and set about finding nesting areas that satisfy the needs of their offspring. All of the following are ways that bugs can make it in, and areas where they might lay eggs:

  • Windows & doors: Faulty screens or excess space around the edges of a threshold can provide an easy way in for tiny bugs looking for holes or tears. 
  • Contaminated items: Pests are often introduced to a structure by being carried in on infested items or inside of old containers. Contaminated items can be bought at the store and then placed directly into the cupboards that provide food sources.
  • Food: The reason pantry pests attack the areas where food is stored is that adult insects specifically seek out these spots and lay their eggs nearby. Some pests will chew through packaging and lay their eggs inside, while others hatch into destructive larvae that can make it through weak plastic or cardboard containers.

Pantry Pest Prevention

Now that you’re familiar with the ways pests get in, the real task is knowing what to do about these factors. The following are simple prevention measures you can take:

  • Crack sealing: In addition to maintaining window screens and installing door sweeps to cover any gaps, you should also make a regular habit of checking for any cracks or holes around your exterior. Tiny bugs can crawl through tiny holes, after all.
  • Smart buying: Before purchasing food items or second-hand clothes and furniture, it’s important to thoroughly inspect any packaging or covers for signs of entry by pantry pests. Contaminated items can introduce bugs directly to other food items if you’re not careful.
  • Food storage: Once you’ve made sure your purchases are pest-free, it’s a good idea to store them in heavier-duty plastic or metal resealable containers, ones that pests can’t chew through. You should especially do this with grains and starches.

Advice & Superior Protection

While household prevention measures can put you a step ahead of a pest infestation, nothing is foolproof. That’s why the best course of action for complete pest prevention is to turn to the professionals for advice or assistance. At Bill Clark Pest Control, we provide thorough inspections and will determine your level of risk and implement prevention methods or treatments that meet your needs.

Don’t let pantry pest contaminations cost you grocery money, turn to Bill Clark Pest Control for ultimate protection.


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