What in the world is a cigarette beetle?
- A beetle that smokes
- A cigarette made of beetles
- A beetle that has a fond love of tobacco
If your answer was “a,” you might be smoking more than tobacco. If your answer was “b,” that is just wrong, and gross, and a number of other disgusting things. If you answered “c,” you are correct. Given their name because of their love of tobacco, cigarette beetles are known for attacking any type of tobacco that you might have stored.
Do cigarette beetles eat anything besides tobacco?
- No, it’s tobacco or death
- Yes, they eat a wide variety of foods and are not limited to tobacco
“B” is the correct answer here. Cigarette beetles eat a wide variety of pantry foods, including cereal, coffee beans, spices, rice, pasta, dried fruits, animal-based products, and pet food. They may even chew through cardboard boxes and food packaging, so only items stored in airtight containers are completely safe from these pests. They have also been known to infest books, dried flowers aren’t safe from them, and either are leather products, silk, and a number of other items that can be found around the house.
How do cigarette beetles get into our homes?
- By sneaking in through gaps under doorways
- By coming in through open windows
- By entering through gaps in the foundation of your home
- By being brought inside in products that are already infested
- All of the above
There are many ways that cigarette beetles make their way into our homes and all of the above are included. They can crawl in your home, fly in your home, or be carried into your home.
What do cigarette beetles look like?
- They are white and look exactly like a miniature cigarette
- They are brown in color and resemble a small cigar
- They look nothing like a cigarette, cigar, or anything else that people might smoke.
Their love of tobacco is the reason for the name. It has nothing to do with how they look. Adults are light brown and oval-shaped with antennae that resemble a serrated bread knife. Their head and thorax are bent forward giving them a big hump that kind of resembles the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Adults measure approximately 1/16” – 1/8” long.
Where do cigarette beetles lay their eggs?
- Only on food products
- Only in food products
- On and in food products
Like a good mother would, mama cigarette beetles lay their eggs directly on and in food to make sure that her cigarette beetle larvae babies will have a meal when they hatch from their eggs.
How many eggs do mama cigarette beetles lay at one time?
- Just one single egg per season
- Between five and ten per year
- Somewhere between 10 and 100 eggs at a time
Mamas can lay 10 to 100 eggs at a time, so it won’t be long before a cigarette beetle problem can get out of control. Once the larvae babies hatch from their eggs, they get their grub on and grow into contributing members of their cigarette beetle society. When it is time, they spin a cocoon to make that change into adults. The entire life cycle, from egg to reproducing adult takes only 30 to 90 days.
Are cigarette beetles harmful to humans?
- No, they are not harmful. They are just a pain in the rear.
- Yes, they bite and carry pathogens that can cause severe illness
- Yes, their sting is excruciatingly painful
Thankfully cigarette beetles are not harmful to humans, so “A” is correct. They do not bite or sting or carry pathogens that will affect humans. They are considered nuisance pests because of the damage they do to food products in the pantry and other items around the house.
How do I know if I have a cigarette beetle problem?
- By actually seeing the adults
- By finding holes in the packaging of products
- By seeing debris coming our of packaging
- All of the above
All of the above are indicators that there is a cigarette beetle infestation in the works. Doing a careful inspection of the products in your pantry will give you a better idea of the extent of your cigarette beetle problem.
What is the best way to get rid of your cigarette beetle infestation?
No matter what your cigarette beetle infestation looks like, HowToPest.com has the products you will need to get rid of these nuisance pests and reclaim your pantry. Unless you live in a bell tower in Notre Dame, the hunchbacks of the beetle world have no business being in your home.