Weevils are small and easy to kill, but they can complete their life cycle quickly. Adult females will start laying eggs almost immediately so once you have some activity in a structure, its sure to blossom into a problem which will need attention.
Weevils start their life as a small caterpillar like larva which hatches on some type of food like a wheat grain, seed or nut. Eggs will hatch within a couple of days of being laid and feed immediately. Feeding will occur for 1-3 weeks and then larva will spin a cocoon in which they will pupate to an adult.
These Weevils get into our foods so easily, but how did the weevils get there in the first place? In the home, weevils can be brought in on packaged foods2 or they can come in from outside. Once inside, a population can grow and expand to food items stored nearby if the pests are not controlled. Store grains and other weevil-tempting foods in dry areas, and always throw out any food where you find weevils. Read on…
Best Way to Control Weevil in Foods.
Common weevils includes those that infest food and those that are destructive to outdoor plants. Either of them can be an annoyance in the home. Look into the best way to control weevil in foods and eliminate and prevent grain weevils from taking over your home.
1. Professional and Chemical Treatments.
Professional and chemical treatments to Control Weevil in Foods are not needed or recommended for weevil control.
This is because insecticides should not be used in or around foods and even spraying emptied areas won’t help if they are not cleaned out.
If you do decide to use an insecticide, use ONLY those that are labeled for crack and crevice treatment in food areas and use ONLY in those cracks and crevices.
Insecticides can never be applied to foods or surfaces, utensils or other items that can or will contact foods. As with any pesticide, thoroughly read and carefully follow all label directions.
2. Prevent Infestations.
The best way to Control Weevil in Foods and pest prevention in stored foods is to prevent infestations. To prevent infestations follow these method:
- Do not buy bagged or boxed foods that are past their expiration dates.
- Do not overbuy food – just buy what you expect to use quickly. Or store excess in refrigerator or freezer.
- Keep pantry and other food areas clean and free of crumbs and loose foods. Clean spills immediately.
- Store foods in insect-resistant containers, such as thick plastic or metal containers with tightly fitted lids. Or keep in the refrigerator or other cold storage.
- Do not add new, fresh food to old; and always clean out containers before refilling.
- Store pet foods, bird seed, etc. in buildings away from the house or basement areas well away from other foods.
- Do not purchase bagged or boxed foods with torn or damaged packaging.
- Keep food storage areas dry; weevils are attracted to moisture.
3. Empty all Cabinets, Shelves and Closets.
If the problem is in the home, to control weevil in foods you will need to empty all cabinets, shelves and closets where they have been seen or thought to exist.
Any food stuff which has them active must be discarded in sealed plastic bags. This will help contain them until the garbage is picked up.
If you are not sure if something has activity, store it in a plastic bag and check it every day to two. If there are any Grains Weevils in the food, they will try to get out within a week or two. If some are found, throw away the entire bag immediately.
4. Kill by Freezing.
Grains Weevils are temperature tolerant, don’t waste your time trying to freeze adults, eggs or larva. Though you can certainly kill some of them by freezing, you’ll need to keep the material stored in sub zero temps for a week or two to have a significant impact.
The average refrigerator/freezer found in most homes gets down to just 20-25 degrees Fahrenheit. In other words, they aren’t nearly cold enough to provide a fast and complete kill.
5. Use Preventive Method.
Inspect all grains upon purchase. Freeze grains for at least 1 week (or store permanently in the freezer) to kill any eggs.
Buy grains in small quantities and eat within a reasonable period of time. (We certainly learned our lesson with this one!)
Store grains in tightly sealed glass, metal, or sturdy plastic containers (not bags).
Regularly clean pantry cracks, crevices, and shelves. Small bags of black pepper placed around the pantry may repel weevils.
6. Regular Cleaning.
Vacuum and/or clean all areas around the infested area, e.g., sweep and clean kitchen floors; remove items from shelves and clean thoroughly; pull out the stove, refrigerator, and other appliances and sweep and clean beneath.