DID YOU GUESS IT??

A Bag of Flour Infested with Red Flour Beetles

Red flour beetles

Discovering “bugs” in your breakfast cereal may be disgusting, but it isn’t unusual, because many insects like to eat what we do.

Stored foods commonly infested include flour, cereals, cracked grains, baking mixes and processed foods, crackers, macaroni, cured meats, powdered milk, dried fruits, nuts, popcorn and spices.

There are a number of species of tiny beetles that infest flour, but the two most common flour beetles are the confused and red flour beetles (shown photos right).

Red Flour Beetle and LarvaeFlour beetles are scavengers. They do not attack whole grains, but rely on other insects to damage the kernels first. In homes, they can be found feeding on flour, cracked grains, cake mixes, beans, peas, dried fruits, nuts, chocolate, spices and tobacco.

Prevention Tips:

  • Purchase food in package sizes that can be used up in a short time. Do not store food products more than two to four months, if possible. Use older packages before newer ones and opened packages before unopened ones.
  • When purchasing packaged foods, be certain containers are not damaged and seals are intact.
  • Store dried foods in insect-proof containers such as screw-top glass, heavy plastic or metal containers. This will prevent entry or escape of insects. Cardboard, paper or plastic wrapping will not prevent insect infestations.
  • Keep food storage areas clean and do not allow crumbs or food particles to accumulate, as exposed food will attract insects. Cleanliness is especially important in areas where pet foods and birdseed are stored.

Learn more from UNL Extension in Lancaster County, Check out

Managing Pantry Pests

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Can You Guess It Photo This Can You Guess It?? Photo Appeared in the February 2006 Nebline. Click for the ANSWER

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