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Red Flour Beetles

(Tribolium castaneum)

Appearance

Red flour beetles are reddish-brown in color and have antennae that end in a three-segmented club. They are flat and elongated.

Size

1/8-inch long.

Behavior

Female beetles each lay 300 to 400 eggs in flour or other foods during a period of five to eight months. Within 5 to 12 days, these eggs hatch into slender larvae. The larval period varies from 22 to more than 100 days, and pupation takes about 8 days. Adults can live for 3 years or more.

Habitat

Adult Red flour beetles are very active and can be found either on the surface or deep within the food material. They are scavengers and must rely on other insects to damage grain before they can feed on it. Because of their small size, they frequently invade storage containers. They breed in damaged grain, grain dust, high-moisture wheat kernels, flour, etc. They are prolific and quite damaging.

Interesting Facts

The Red and Confused flour beetles are known as "bran bugs" because they primarily attack milled grain products such as flour and cereals. Flour and other processed food products heavily infested by these beetles often develop a grayish tint and in some cases a disagreeable odor. These beetles often hitchhike into the home in infested flour and can multiply into large populations. Some survive on food accumulations in cabinet cracks and crevices.

Control

Do you live in South Florida and think that this pest may be invading your home? Hulett Environmental Services offers specialty pest control treatments designed to control and eliminate this pest!

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Tuesday, September 02, 2014
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