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Mary from Parkes, Nsw, Australia writes,

What is the 3-5mm long maggot-type thing with hair, the casings of which I find in my storage cupboards?

This creature seems to feed on other dead insects which I have collected, and even drilled holes in some mouse bait pellets I put there, leaving small piles of dust. It is the larvae of something, and I want to eliminate it, as the storage room has a strange musty smell, which I think is caused by the action of these creatures, in a used mattress which is in the spare room.


It is almost impossible to tell you for sure what type of insect you have without seeing it. We can tell you that it is most likely the larva of some type of pantry beetle and from your description could possibly be a Dermestid Pantry Beetle Larvae. Dermestid beetles are a scavenger beetle that prefer to feed on dead tissue (insects, animals) but will also feed on grains (pasta, rodent bait, flour) when necessary. You need to inspect the infested room and discard all infested items. You should also thoroughly clean every crack and crevice of the room to help get rid of hidden larva as they are known to crawl away from infested items to pupate. After cleaning the room you can spray all of the cracks and crevices with a residual insecticide such as Cy-Kick CS. Please note that without finding and discarding the infested items you will not be able to get rid of the infestation.

Answer last updated on: 07/02/2012

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