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Beetles Found in the House

Although there are a good number of beetles that can be found in Florida, there are only a few that are routinely found in the Florida home. Some prefer the indoors and some may come in after catching a ride on firewood or in grocery bags or other items brought in from outside.

Red Flour Beetle

This beetle is relatively small – only about 1/8 of an inch.  As their name suggests, they are reddish-brown in color.  They love grains and can sometimes be found in open sacks of flour or grains.  If they don’t find open sacks of flour or grains, they are known to look for food in boxes of cereal and loaves of bread.  When they infest something, they may leave a foul-smelling odor.

Confused Flour Beetle

This beetle is also relatively small and reddish-brown in color.  They also like flours and grains, but can also be found in other food items, such as dried fruits, rice, beans and nuts.  Not only do they sometimes leave a foul-odor but their very presence also encourages the growth of mold.  Their name comes from the fact that they look very similar to the red flour beetle.  The only visible difference is the shape of the antennae.

Pine Beetles

Pine beetles usually attack dying or diseased trees.  They breed and feed on the inside bark of trees. Although not normally found in the house, they can hitchhike in on firewood.  When they come inside, they usually try to get back outside as the pine tree is their primary food source.

Old House Borers

These types of beetles could be up to an inch in length and are usually brown to grayish-black in color.  Like their name implies, the old House borers love to bore into untreated wood. They feast on wood inside the house, like the walls, structure or even the cabinets, so long as the wood is relatively untreated.

What to do if you see them

If you have beetles in your pantry, the first thing you need to do is to throw away everything that’s been infected.  When you bring in new foods, make sure to seal them up in Tupperware or glass containers that have tight lids.  Then it’s time to get out the insecticide to make sure that the ones hiding in the crevices get targeted and killed.

For wood beetles, get rid of the firewood from in the house.  Do a thorough sweep of the area.  If they just recently entered the home, this might be enough to get rid of them. If they have started feasting on the wood in your house, you must call a professional.

16 Dec

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