Pesteleminater Log

Drugstore beetles: Control and prevention

Drugstore beetles (Stegobium paniceum), also known as bread beetles or buscuit beetles are a common problem in households and commercial storage facilities, as they feed on and contaminate grains, cereals, and other stored products. They are also known to infest a variety of dry goods, including tobacco, spices, and even medications. Not only do they damage these products, but they can also multiply quickly, making them difficult to get rid of once they have infested an area. In this guide, we will provide you with information on how to identify drugstore beetles, where they are commonly found, and what steps you can take to control and prevent their infestations. By following the advice in this guide, you can protect your stored goods and keep your home or business free from these pesky pests.

Drugstore beetles as a pest

Drugstore beetles are a common household and industrial pest. These small insects, which measure only about 1/8 of an inch in length, are attracted to a variety of dry goods, including grains, cereals, tobacco, spices, and medications. They are known to infest pantries, kitchens, and storage areas, where they can cause significant damage to these products.

In households, drugstore beetles can be a major nuisance, as they can contaminate and ruin food items. They are particularly attracted to grains and cereals, and can quickly multiply, leading to a significant infestation if left unchecked. In addition to contaminating food, drugstore beetles can also cause structural damage to buildings by chewing through wood and other materials.

In commercial settings, drugstore beetles can be a major problem, as they can infest and damage large quantities of dry goods. This can lead to financial losses for businesses, as infested products may need to be discarded or replaced. In addition to causing financial losses, infestations of these pests can also lead to negative publicity for businesses, as customers may be put off by the presence of insects in products they purchase.

To prevent drugstore beetle infestations, it is important to store dry goods in airtight containers and to regularly check for and dispose of any infested items. It is also a good idea to regularly clean and vacuum pantries, kitchens, and other storage areas to remove any food debris that could attract these pests. If an infestation does occur, it is important to identify and remove all infested items and to use an appropriate insecticide to kill any remaining beetles and prevent further infestations.

5 Signs of a drugstore beetle infestation

There are several signs that you may have a bread beetle infestation in your home:

  1. Seeing live or dead insects: You may spot bread beetles crawling on your pantry shelves or in your food packaging. You may also find dead bread beetles in the affected areas.
  2. Finding holes in food packaging: Bread beetles can chew through plastic, paper, and other types of packaging to get to food. If you notice small holes in your food packaging, it could be a sign of a bread beetle infestation.
  3. Finding webs or small, pellet-like droppings: Bread beetles can spin webs in infested areas and leave behind small, pellet-like droppings.
  4. Seeing damaged or moldy food: Bread beetles can contaminate food with their feces and shed skin, which can lead to mold growth. If you notice damaged or moldy food, it could be a sign of a bread beetle infestation.
  5. Smelling a musty or moldy odor: A bread beetle infestation can produce a musty or moldy odor, which can be an indication that you have an infestation.


To control a bread beetle infestation, there are several steps you can take:

  • Remove the source of the infestation: The first step in controlling a bread beetle infestation is to identify and remove the source of the infestation. This may involve throwing away infested food, cleaning and sanitizing the affected area, and sealing any cracks or crevices where the insects may be hiding.
  • Store food properly: Proper food storage is key to preventing bread beetle infestations. Store dry goods, such as flour, cereals, and grains, in airtight containers to prevent insects from getting in.
  • Keep your pantry and kitchen clean: Regularly cleaning your pantry and kitchen can help prevent bread beetle infestations by removing any crumbs or spills that might attract the insects.
  • Use insecticides: If the infestation is severe, you may need to use an insecticide to kill the bread beetles. There are several types of insecticides available, including pyrethrin-based products, which are effective against bread beetles. Follow the label instructions carefully when using any insecticide.
  • Consider using pheromone traps: Pheromone traps are another option for controlling bread beetles. These traps contain a chemical that attracts the insects, luring them into a sticky substance that traps and kills them.


To prevent the occurrence of drugstore beetles in your home, there are several steps you can take:

  • Keep your home clean: Drugstore beetles are attracted to food and clutter, so it is important to keep your home clean and clutter-free. Regularly sweep, mop, and vacuum your floors, and wipe down surfaces to remove any crumbs or spills.
  • Store food properly: Proper food storage is key to preventing drugstore beetle infestations. Store dry goods, such as flour, cereals, and grains, in airtight containers to prevent insects from getting in.
  • Check for infestations regularly: Regularly inspect your pantry, kitchen, and any other areas where you store food for any signs of infestation, such as small holes in packaging or the presence of live or dead insects. If you notice any signs of infestation, take immediate action to address the problem.
  • Repair any leaks or moisture issues: Drugstore beetles are attracted to moisture, so it is important to fix any leaks or moisture issues in your home to prevent infestations.
  • Use screens and seal any openings: To prevent drugstore beetles from entering your home, be sure to use screens on windows and doors, and seal any cracks or crevices around the foundation and walls of your home.

Frequently asked questions: Drugstore beetles

What do drugstore beetles look like?

Drugstore beetles are small, brown beetles that are about 1/8 to 1/4 inch long. They have a rounded shape and their wings are tucked under their wing covers, giving them a "humpbacked" appearance.

What do drugstore beetles eat?

Drugstore beetles are attracted to a wide variety of dry, starchy foods, such as flour, cereals, grains, spices, and dried fruit. They can also infest drugs, tobacco, and other products made from plant materials.

How do drugstore beetles get into my home?

Drugstore beetles can enter your home through openings in the walls, doors, or windows, or they can be brought in on infested food or products.

How can I prevent drugstore beetles from infesting my home?

To prevent drugstore beetles from infesting your home, store dry goods in airtight containers, keep your pantry and kitchen clean, inspect food before bringing it into your home, use insecticides (if necessary), and consider using pheromone traps.

How do I get rid of drugstore beetles?

If you have a drugstore beetle infestation, you can try removing the source of the infestation, cleaning and sanitizing the affected area, using insecticides, and using pheromone traps. If the infestation is severe, it is best to seek the help of a pest control professional. They will be able to assess the extent of the infestation and recommend the most effective treatment options.

Pesteleminater Log
Pesteleminator is a website that offers tips and information on pest control and prevention. We provide articles and infographics to help educate people on the best practices for keeping their properties free of pests, including insects and rodents. Whether you are dealing with an infestation or just want to take proactive steps to prevent pests, Pesteleminator has something for you.