Thursday, March 15, 2012

Red Flour Beetle

Tribolium castaneum
Today's animal is quite the pest; they are destructive as both larvae and adults, and though they originated in the Indo-Australian tropical regions, they can be found causing damage all around the world!

One little interesting fact is that the Red Flour Beetle is very similar in size, appearance, and behavior to the Confused Flour Beetle from Africa. The latter actually got its name because the two species were so alike!

Despite the name, Red Flour Beetles can be found in more than just flour. They hang out in cereals, nuts, seeds, and all sorts of other dried food products. They don't cause structural damage, and they don't have stingers that harm people, but they can have a huge negative impact on stored food. The Beetles even lay their eggs in food, the larvae eat the food, and the adults can live as long as 3 years.

Red Flour Beetles are very small, and very hardy. This makes it difficult to truly get rid of them. You have to completely eradicate all infested materials, check all possible cracks and crevasses, and essentially set up a sealed, protected food storage system. Pesticides and bleaches don't do a whole lot; a thorough disposal of materials is your best bet.

IUCN Status : Not Listed
Location : Worldwide
Size : Body Length less than 1cm
Classification : Phylum : Arthropoda -- Class : Insecta -- Order : Coleoptera
Family : Tenebrionidae -- Genus : Tribolium -- Species : T. castaneum

1 comment:

  1. I used this photo for my powerpoint presentation!
    Thanks! :)


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