Merchant Grain Beetles/Sawtooth beetles

What do merchant grain beetles look like?

Merchant grain beetles are small, skinny brown beetles.  They grow to only about 1/10” long and have very flat bodies.  They have wings, but rarely fly.

Do merchant grain beetles bite?

No.  But they can infest food products and contaminate it.

Where do merchant grain beetles come from?

Merchant grain beetles are found worldwide in food storage areas, so they can ship to your local grocery store and come home to your pantry without ever being noticed.  Because of their flat bodies, they can shimmy into packaging easily.  

Habitat

Merchant grain beetles live in food products around the world.  Contrary to their name, they are not often found in grain, but prefer tastier things instead: chocolates, cake mixes, dried pasta, cereals and the like.  One of their favorite foods is cracked corn, so if you have birdseed be sure to store it in a sealed container.

Hazards

Because they infest the food they eat, merchant grain beetles contaminate food products and make them inedible and unsalable. 

Halting

Be sure to inspect food you bring into your home for merchant grain beetles and other pests, particularly bulk items or items from bulk retailers.  If you discover merchant grain beetles, discard any food in outdoor bins and clean the area thoroughly with soap and water.   Store pantry items in solid, airtight containers.  Store pet food and birdseed in sealed and solid containers.

 

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