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Pantry pests are commonly found in Houston homes. You may hear them called stored product pests. These pests thrive by entering residential structures and consuming processed and dried foods. Once inside your dwelling, they can consume a wide assortment of products, including dry pet food, flour, cereal, crackers, spices, and more. Houston is home to several pantry pests, but the most common are the cigarette beetle, saw-toothed grain beetles, and Indian meal moth. These pests are frequently found in Houston kitchens.
Pantry pests are difficult to deal with because they blend in with their food source. Since they hide in their food source, they can eat and breed constantly. There is no need to stop. On average, they’ll produce a few generations every year.
Appearances Of Common Pantry Pests
Don’t forget to learn how to identify pantry pests. Below, you’ll learn about the most common species and their appearances.
Indian Meal Moths
Indian meal moths can create serious problems in your home. Once they’ve invaded your home, they’re going to build cocoons on the ceilings of your kitchen. The moths are small with multiple colors. For instance, they have a white-gray front and a coppery back. They also have reddish-brown wings. The moths are difficult to eliminate, but you primary need to worry about the larvae because they cause extensive food damage. They’ll eat an assortment of food products including bread and spices.
Saw-Toothed Grain Beetles
At roughly a tenth of an inch, saw-toothed grain beetles are difficult to eliminate. They have slender, brown bodies and tooth projections on both sides of their thoraxes. These projections are similar to saws. These pests are going to feed on many food products, including dried fruit, cereal, flour, candy, and pet food. Adult saw-toothed grain beetles and larvae will also eat birdseed and rodent bait.
Houston is home to cigarette beetles. These pests are an eighth of an inch with a light brown body. They also have a unique humped back and smooth wing covers. They look fuzzy because they have body hairs. As the name suggests, cigarette beetles prefer eating tobacco products. They’ll consume cigars, cigarettes, and loose tobacco. They’ll also consume nuts, candy, and pet food.
Pantry Pests Causes & Reasons
Are you curious to learn why pantry pests have invaded your residence? Ultimately, they want to enter your home so they can eat your food products. It only requires a few pests to create a large infestation in your home. Again, they live in the food they eat so they can breed nonstop. It is common for these pests to produce a handful of new generations annually. They can sometimes enter homes from outside, but most people bring them with them.
When you buy packaged food at a store, there is a risk that the food is going to contain pantry pests. If it does, these pests are going to come home with you
Pantry Pest Signs
Unfortunately, it is easy to ignore a pantry pest infestation. These pests blend in with the food they consume so spotting them won’t be easy. You likely won’t notice the pantry pests in your food packages. Instead, you will realize you have a problem when you find moths flying in your home. They tend to be found around food products. You can also find beetles around your packages. The moths are attracted to light so they might fly around your kitchen lights.
Dangerous Linked To Pantry Pests
You’re undoubtedly concerned that these pests are going to make someone ill. Although they’ll create problems, cigarette beetles, Indian meal moths, and other pantry pests are not physically dangerous. These pests do not bite or transmit illnesses. They’re not going to attack you in the middle of the night. These pests will contaminate your food but they’re not going to make anyone seriously ill.
Even if you eat pantry pests or their eggs, you won’t get sick. They do not spread diseases or dangerous pathogens. However, you have to tackle this problem promptly because they’re going to damage your food products.
Avoiding Pantry Pest Problems
Take steps to prevent pantry pests from entering your dwelling and turning your life upside down. Use the steps below to minimize the risks.
- Keep your food products stored in containers with tight lids. Don’t use fragile materials such as cardboard or paper. Pantry pest larvae will chew through these materials without difficulty.
- Keep your shelves clean and tidy. Try to clean your pantry shelves several times each week.
- It is pertinent to keep new food products by themselves. Never add them to containers with old food products. Unless you know that the food is free of pests, keep them separate.
- Test to find out if your food product is infested. Put it in a plastic bag and wait for a week or longer. If bugs show up in the bag, it has pantry pests.
- Always clean old containers thoroughly before using them to store new food products.
Dealing With Pantry Pests
Begin taking steps to deal with this problem as soon as possible. If you delay, the problem will worsen and more food products will be damaged. DIY methods can help but they’re not comprehensive or consistent. Some of them will expose you to unnecessary health hazards. Follow the tips below to try to fix the problem without professional assistance.
- Get rid of any items that contain pantry pests. Always put them in a plastic bag before throwing them out.
- Clean your pantry thoroughly. Remove everything from the shelves before vacuum them. Put the vacuum’s content in a plastic bag before throwing it out.
- Always wash the walls, corners, and shelves in your pantry.
Remember that over-the-counter products can help but some do not. Others will expose you to serious health risks. If you want to take care of the problem and protect yourself, use our services. We’ll find out where they’re at before getting rid of them quickly.
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Phone our office right now so we can begin helping you soon. After your initial call, we’ll get back to you in 48 hours or sooner.
Safe Pantry Pest Removals
We’re going to protect you to the fullest. We only use products registered with the EPA because they’ve been proven safe and effective. We’ll minimize the risks by administering these safe products precisely. Our technicians know how to protect our clients during each phase of the process. If specific precautions need to be taken, we’ll let you know.
Preventing Pantry Pests From Ruining Your Food
Take steps to stop pantry pests from entering your home and destroying your food products. The best thing to do is to pay close attention to the food products you purchase. Make sure that you carefully check all of the food products you purchase before bringing them inside. Keep your pantries clean and always store your food products in airtight containers.