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Insects Invade McAllen Home Inside Decorations

3 years 2 months 3 days ago Monday, June 05 2017 Jun 5, 2017 June 05, 2017 9:53 PM June 05, 2017 in News

MCALLEN - Tiny bugs made their way around Tamara Faubion’s home Monday afternoon.

Crawling from the countertops, to the tile floor, and even inside food boxes, the bugs don’t seem to mind company. After months of cleaning and fumigating, the insects continue withstanding Faubion’s tactics to rid them for good.

The Indiana native blamed a souvenir for the infestation. While on vacation late last year she said she purchased decorative chili peppers in Hatch, N.M.; adding to her pepper artwork collection. To her surprise, the decorative item harbored insects.

Danielle Sekula with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension identified the insects as cigarette, drugstore and flour beetles. The insects breed in aged decorative items such as potpourri and feast on food in the pantry.

Sekula said she found hundreds of the tiny bugs inside plastic containers of rice and pasta inside Faubion’s pantry.

Sekula said taking away the bug’s food source is key otherwise, “you'll keep on cleaning, trying to kill them in your kitchen, but if you're not eliminating that food source, then they'll just keep on reproducing.” She added, “generally we're the biggest pest because we bring it into our house in the first place.” 

The tiny beetles reproduce by the hundreds every few weeks and at higher rates in warmer weather.

Sekula recommended anyone with these types of beetles inside their home do the following:

  • Clean thoroughly

  • Get rid of old food and old decorations.

  • Store dry food in glass containers with screw-on lids. (This prevents the bug from eating through the package and surviving longer.)

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