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Why Are There Bugs In My Louisville Pantry?

an indian meal moth in a pantry

Foraging pests specifically seek out our stored food, making the pantry a prime target for many invasive insects. Learning how you can prevent and respond to pest problems can help save you money and protect your food from contamination.

Common Pantry Pests To Watch For

All kinds of pests can raid your pantry for food, including rodents like mice and rats and even other insects. However, there are several species of insects that specifically target food items that tend to be stored in pantries and cupboards. Here are some of the most common pantry pests to worry about:

  • Indian meal moth: Meal moths eat dry grain food and starches like flour and cornmeal. Adults often lay their eggs directly into food items, providing their larvae with a short distance to travel for a first meal.
  • Sawtooth beetle: Another bug that feeds on dry goods, the sawtooth beetle looks like a cross between an ant and a beetle. They are usually light or dark brown.
  • Cigarette beetles: Round, bean-like beetles with top shells, these guys don’t just plague convenience stores that store tobacco products. They are also attracted to dry foods found in homes.

How Pantry Infestations Start

Pantry pests come in all shapes and sizes, and infestations can start without you even realizing it. Often, food products or old containers purchased from the store can be already infested with pantry pests or their eggs. Once you bring them back home, they can thrive on the other nearby food sources. Adult pantry pests can also infiltrate your property just like other pests, flying or crawling in through a cracked window or open door. They quickly look for areas where food is stored, not for themselves but for their unborn offspring. Mature bugs lay their eggs directly into food packaging or containers, allowing their eggs to hatch and immediately start gorging themselves on your stored foodstuff. Once the feeding begins, it isn’t long before these larvae mature themselves and become mating members of the population, starting the whole problem over again.

Pest Prevention Tips For Your Property

Rather than wait until a pest infestation is apparent, the smart thing to do is get started right away on preventative measures -- and keep upon them. Here are some things you can do to reduce the risk of a pantry pest infestation on your property: 

  • Food storage: First and foremost, you need to make sure that food is stored in secure locations and sturdy containers. Consider storing dry foods in heavier-duty plastic or metal containers that can’t be chewed through. 
  • Crack sealing: Just like other insect problems, pantry pests often get inside through tiny cracks or holes in the wall. Frequently checking for and fixing any blemishes around your exterior can help prevent this.
  • Screens & sweeps: Open windows and doors can be fortified with screens, but it’s important to maintain those, too, so as to avoid tears or holes. Sweeps underneath doors can also limit gaps that bugs can crawl through.

Action Is Always Best

Pantry pests aren’t just unsavory, they cost you money having to replace contaminated groceries. Once a population has moved in, it can be nearly impossible to get rid of on your own, too. That’s why it’s always best to turn to the home pest control professionals for total pantry protection. At Action Pest Control, we can give you even more tips on how to avoid and prevent infestations, and we can get started right away on an inspection of your property. Not only can we check for existing problems, but we can also look for areas of improvement when it comes to keeping pests of all kinds out. If an infestation is already forming, you need proven, expert solutions to get rid of the problem right away.

Don’t let pantry pests chew their way through your budget, call Action Pest today.