You may not think much about it until you pour the last little bit of cereal into your bowl and a not so friendly visitor appears. There are a number of small critters that fall into the category of pantry pests. Pantry pests include: ants, beetles, earwigs, pill bugs, the indianmeal moth, and merchant grain beetle. The indianmeal moth and merchant grain beetle are by far the most common of the pantry pests. Luckily for us, neither of these pests pose serious health or property threats. Unfortunately, they do become a nuisance to homeowners due to their quick ability to infest an area in a short amount of time.
Pantry pests can infest cereal, flour, dried fruit, nuts, chocolate and more!
Merchant grain beetles are typically not found in grain products, but instead like to enjoy your cereal, cake mixes, macaroni, cookies and chocolate. Indianmeal moths like to feed on dried fruits, chocolate, candy, nuts and even your pets food, yuck!
Here some helpful ways to prevent pantry pests and say Good-Bye to those unwelcome visitors.
- Invest in proper storage: Having proper Tupperware-type containers with secure lids are a definite must. Not only will these containers spruce up you pantry, but will protect your food from pantry pests and even small rodents that may be looking for an extra meal. Plastic or glass containers work great with a secure fitting lid, air tight lids are even better.
- Inspect the groceries: Most pantry pests are brought into the home from items that are already infested, such as food in paper grocery bags, cardboard or plastic bags. Make sure on your next shopping trip, you inspect the items packaging before placing it in your cart. Do not buy products that are opened or shows any signs of damage. For products that are already in your home pantry, look closely at the packaging and sift through ingredients to ensure they remained pest-free while in storage.
- Practice Good Sanitation: Clean up spills immediately from counter-tops, floors, shelves, and tables. Make sure you clean your selves regularly of expired food, and take out the trash on a regular basis. Another good habit is to clean your cupboard with soap and water 3-4 times a year.
- Seal the Cracks: If you live in an old house, chances are there a few cracks. Seal up those cracks and holes that pests might be using as a free entryway into your home. Also eliminate all moisture sites, including leaking pipes and clogged drains with a dehumidifier.
If you find that unwelcome visitor in your next bowl of cereal, or when you go to bake your next cake, make sure to discard all the infested foods outside! And make sure to clean all the shelves with a vacuum.
Already have an infestation? Give us a call to inspect and the treat the problem.