Get to the bottom of stored product pest infestations

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November 2, 2022

Heather Patterson

Heather Patterson

Dealing with a stored product pest (SPP) problem in a home or structure sometimes calls for a healthy dose of patience. In many cases, getting all the necessary information from the customer to perform a thorough inspection can be a challenge.

To really solve this problem, all sources supporting the infestation need to be located, identified and eliminated. Additionally, knowing the species of the pest will give you key clues to its behaviors, biology, preferences and habits. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Think beyond the kitchen. Food and feed can be found stored in closets, basements and garages. On some occasions, a customer can forget they’re even there. Also, it’s not uncommon for snacks to be kept and eaten in game rooms and home offices.
  • Find out where the dog food, pet treats and bird seed are stored. These items are not always the first to come to mind when asking the customer “Where do you keep your food?”
  • Inspect all items made of plant and animal material. This includes decorative pieces, dried flower or plant arrangements, and craft items/children’s art projects that contain beans, seeds or noodles. Items of sentimental value can be placed in a freezer, as exposure to extreme cold can eliminate the infestation.

Getting to the bottom of an SPP infestation source requires us to get really good at asking questions, which can make the process feel more like an investigation rather than an inspection.

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About the Author

Heather Erskine Patterson is a technical services manager for the product development team at Control Solutions Inc.

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