The drugstore beetle (also known as the Biscuit Beetle) gained its name because it was frequently found feeding on drugs in pharmacies many years ago. Now, they are customarily found infesting all types of dry stored food products, spices, seeds, grains and dried plant material. The drugstore beetle is a pest of stored products.

Photo attribution link:  CSIRO [CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons


They are approximately 3 - 4 mm long, red-brown, oval beetles. The larvae are small and white approximately 0.5 mm long. The drugstore beetle is a red-brown oval-shaped beetle.



The adult beetles live from 2 to 4 weeks and during this time the females may deposit between 20-100 eggs. The hatching larvae are 0.5 mm long and very mobile. The larval period usually ranges from four to five months, but under favorable conditions the development from egg to adult may occur in 6 to 8 weeks. When the larvae are fully grown, pupation occurs and they remain in this resting stage for 12 to 18 days.



It is not a major pest in stored grains but will attack spices, seeds, grains and dried plant material as well as packaging materials such as paper and cardboard. They have also been known to feed on leather, wool, hair and books. Their presence can be detected from pinhead holes in the infested items. Packaging materials such as paper and cardboard are also attacked. Since the drugstore beetle can fly well, the source of infestation can sometimes be hard to find. The drugstore beetle is not a major pest in stored grains.


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