Joan and Jack and their two elementary school kids, Jimmy and June, live in an upscale Papillion home. They are living the American dream. Early one morning, Joan got out of bed and noticed the kitchen light was on. She looked at the clock. It was only 4 in the morning. She reached over and shook Jack awake.

“Jack, the light is on in the kitchen and I don’t think it’s one of the kids.”

“Well, I better go and see what’s going on. Are we sure we turned the light off last night?”

“Yes, dear, I’m sure of it. Just be careful.”

Jack grabbed a baseball bat he kept for occasions such as this and smiled as he bravely said, “I’ll be careful.”

Jack slowly and quietly made his way down the hall and creeping through the living room, he stubbed his toe on the sofa. He had a tough time not hollering because the pain was excruciating. He paused and listened to see if he could hear anything coming from the kitchen. As he inched closer to the swinging kitchen door, he swore he could hear something like…and as he pushed the door open, yes, something like the crunching of cereal. At the kitchen table sat seven of the most grotesque looking creatures he had ever seen. All seven of them turned and looked at Jack who passed out and fell on the floor.

Are you groggily waking in the morning, stumbling to the kitchen, only to be greeted by a party of rice weevils sitting at your table scarfing down a box of Cheerios?

If the answer is yes, then read on. If the answer is no, read on anyway because we have a lot to talk about in reference to pantry pests.

Omaha Pantry Pest Facts

Pantry pests, like Indian meal moths, refer to a group of beetles or moths that infest stored food products. The source of the infestation is not always easy to determine but many times the insect came with food items purchased at the market.

Pantry pests in Omaha, ne target grains and processed foods. The change of season is not a condition for infestation. Beetles and moths can attack during any time of the year. The different types of species invading your food all have nuanced variations of habit, the type of food they eat, their behavior, and where they live. If you are experiencing activity where you store your food, you should call a professional pest control company to determine the type of pest pressure involved. An accurate identification precludes the type of treatment a professional pest control operator would employ. The PC professional leverages knowledge, experience, and training to successfully maintain control. The PC pro knows his equipment and knows which products are the least invasive. We are, after all, treating food areas, therefore the utmost care and prudence must be exercised in whatever application is selected. Your health and safety are always the number one priority.

Consumers need to respond quickly when they see even one moth or weevil because your grains, cereal, and flour could become infected with insect feces and body parts.

Infestation Things To Do

Consult with a pest control professional for guidance and service. After the PCO identifies the pest, activity is monitored and a treatment plan is put in place.

Inspect food packages at home. Indian Meal Moths are attracted to bird seed, pet food, dried chili peppers, cereal, grains, bread, pasta, spices, dried fruits, and nuts. Rice weevils are generally found in flour. Discard any infested product.

Note that it is possible to have an infested product and not see any obvious signs of activity. The Indian Meal Moth larvae spin a gnarly looking silken webbing over their food source. The Meal Moth has a snout that can drill through cardboard and heavy gauged paper.

Search for food that has been left in the cupboard too long. Begin to use first-in, first out storage principles.

Maintain a clean and well-organized pantry.

Clean cracks and crevices of cupboards.

Wipe up spilled sugar, flour, or grains.

Seal freshly bought flour in the freezer for four days. Freezing kills weevils and eggs that may be present in the flour.

A bay leaf placed in a bag of flour may help resist weevil infestation.

Remove old shelf paper. Wipe down the interior of your cupboards with warm soapy water. After everything is dried, go ahead and replace the shelf paper. Return the stored food products back to the pantry.

When vacuuming insects and debris, be sure to throw away the bag or empty and clean out the canister.

Finally, store food in plastic containers with tight-fitting lids.

It is a gross experience when confronted with weevils and moths floating in your morning breakfast. If this happens, the first thing you should do is contact Miller Pest and Termite in Omaha.

For more information regarding pantry pests, click here.