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the web of life in southern Africa

Stegobium paniceum (Drugstore beetle)

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Ecdysozoa > Panarthropoda > Tritocerebra > Arthopoda > Mandibulata > Atelocerata > Panhexapoda > Hexapoda > Insecta (insects) > Dicondyla > Pterygota > Metapterygota > Neoptera > Eumetabola > Holometabola > Coleoptera (beetles) > Polyphaga > Superfamily: Bostrychoidea > Family: Anobiidae

The Drugstore beetle is a tiny brown beetle without a 'nose' (i.e. it is not a weevil) found infesting dry foodstuffs  in cupboards and pantries. Infested food can include grain, seeds, vegetable products, spices, and chocolate. It is the most common non-weevil beetle found in such situations. It is the larval stage (a small white grub) that causes the damage: the adults do not feed. You can control them simply by finding the infested food and disposing of it and then by insuring that dry food stuffs (e.g. grain) stored for long periods are kept in sealed plastic containers. The source of the infestation can sometimes be quite difficult to trace. For instance, a member of the public brought some specimens of Drugstore beetle in to the South African Museum for identification which she had found in her child's bedroom. She was advised to try and find the source and it turned out to be the contents of a bean bag!

Stegobium paniceum  

Adult Stegobium paniceum beetle, 2-3mm. [image by Hamish Robertson ]



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