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How Fumigation Solves Stored Product Pest Issues

February 26, 2019


idian meal moth infesting food storage

How Fumigation Solves Stored Product Pest Issues

Stored product pests can be a nuisance. If you’ve ever had to deal with them, you know just how frustrating they can be. Indian meal moths and Psocids are among these stored product pests that can affect both homes and commercial facilities. Let’s learn more about them.

Indian Meal Moths

These insects are about a half inch in length with a multi-colored set of wings that range in color from dark brown to tan. These pests usually infest a wide variety of foods like cornmeal, nuts, pet food, bird seed, flour, and more. If Indian meal moths come into a home or commercial facility, it doesn’t take long for their population to grow quite large, making them extremely difficult to control.
 
Indian meal moths lay hundreds of eggs at one time that will hatch within two weeks. It's during the larval stage that most of the damage to food products happens. Larvae are about a half inch in length, and mostly white (sometimes there may be a green or pink tint to them) in color. These worm-like larvae leave behind silken webbing through infested foods. When the time comes to pupate, they leave their food sources and crawl to high locations (like ceiling corners) to do so.
 
A few ways to help prevent an infestation includes:
  • Sealing cracks and crevices to keep them from entering homes.
  • Locating and removing infested material (packages that you may have brought into your home from the grocery store).
  • Inspecting other material for signs that the infestation has spread.
  • Pheromone trapping can be beneficial in commercial settings to pinpoint activity.
For more information on control tips, see our Indian meal moth page.

Psocids

Psocids are found in nature, and they can also infest a structure from its surroundings, which is commonly done in the Corn Belt. There are many different species of psocids and they can be just as much of a nuisance as the Indian meal moth. These pests are tiny insects, but they create a big problem!
 
Psocids have small, soft bodies that are less than 5mm long and they have long antennae. They can be winged or wingless. These pests are commonly found in warm, humid places. They may dwell in old books, papers, carpets, cereals and other dark, humid locations around the house. Their food choices are fungi, grains, pollen, molds, and other organic materials. These pests may also infect food plants, food-grade packaging, and lots of plastic-making facilities such as those that make baby formula, pharmaceuticals, and others.
 
For Psocid control, it’s recommended that you inspect and remove infected food sources:
  • Store food in dry, cool locations that are well ventilated.
  • Since Psocids love to breed in humidity, eliminate humid, damp locations within your home.
  • If commercial sites are infected, the use of fans and sealing gaps in the exterior of the building is a good idea.
  • A mallet should be used to check incoming pallets for infestations.  
For more information and more control tips, see our Psocid page.

Getting Professional Help

If stored product pests such as Indian meal moths and psocids have invaded your home or business, fumigation may be just the answer you need to solve your problems. Action Pest Control offers fumigation services for a variety of residential and commercial facilities. We provide both structural and container fumigation, including lumber fumigation. This will solve your pest problems, as well as the secondary problems that come along with a business infestation like spreading infestations, bad reviews, and loss of customers.
 
Our technicians will provide tailored care that will effectively treat these pests while making sure there is minimal risk and liability for you! They can also help seal cracks and crevices to prevent future infestations. Don’t let stored product pests take over your home or business. If you live within our service areas, contact Action Pest to schedule a free inspection!



 

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