Table of contents:

Get Rid of Bacon Beetles: The Best Tips
Get Rid of Bacon Beetles: The Best Tips

Video: Get Rid of Bacon Beetles: The Best Tips

Отличия серверных жестких дисков от десктопных
Video: 7 Effective Ways to Get Rid of All Insects at Home 2023, January

Harmless and useful outdoors, bacon beetles are a real nuisance in your own four walls. The vermin cause unsavory feeding damage and trigger allergies. Since bacon beetles like to hide, pest control can be difficult. We explain to you where bacon beetles like to hide and which home remedies and natural means you can use to combat them.

Table of contents Table of contents Bacon beetles in the household: How to get rid of the pests quickly

  • Bacon beetle species
  • Where do bacon beetles live?
  • Detect bacon beetle infestation
  • Fight bacon beetle without chemicals
  • Which remedies help against beetles?
  • Prevent bacon beetle infestation
  • Conclusion: fight bacon beetles naturally

Table of contents Table of contents Bacon beetles in the household: How to get rid of the pests quickly

  • Bacon beetle species
  • Where do bacon beetles live?
  • Detect bacon beetle infestation
  • Fight bacon beetle without chemicals
  • Which remedies help against bacon beetles?
  • Prevent bacon bug infestation
  • Conclusion: fight bacon beetles naturally

What types of bacon beetles are there?

The large family of bacon beetles (Dermestidae) includes the actual bacon beetles (genus Dermestes) as well as the fur beetles (genus Attagenus) and the carpet beetles (genus Anthrenus). All insects are about 10 mm long and have an oval, elongated body, as well as antennae that end up thickening into a club. Nevertheless, the individual types look somewhat different:

  • In the common bacon beetle the front half of the wings is colored beige with three reddish dots. Its larvae have a brown, bristly body with two thorns at the end.
  • The common fur beetle has a very black, hairy body, its larvae are golden yellow.
  • The carpet beetle the black body is covered with brown, red and gray spots. The body of the larvae consists of alternating light and brown rings and is covered by light hair and bristles.

Where do bacon beetles live?

Bacon beetles live in every climate zone and on every continent. In the wild, bird nests and deciduous trees are their natural habitats. They mainly eat carrion in the forest and thus fulfill an important function in the ecosystem. However, the insects also feel comfortable in houses, apartments and storage rooms if they offer enough food. They thrive best at a temperature of 18 to 25 degrees, then up to six generations of bacon beetles are possible.

Because the adult beetles are attracted to the light, they like to fly into the house through open windows in the evening. If a marten rat carcass drags into the attic or if a dead bird lies in the fireplace, the smell of putrefaction also attracts the pests. The females like to lay their eggs near food stores. Protected, dark corners such as cracks in parquet floors, rubbing strakes and furniture offer the bacon beetle ideal hiding places.

After about eight weeks, the brownish larvae hatch and immediately start looking for food. They eat foods such as bacon, hard cheese, dry fish and animal feed that contain animal proteins. Since they can digest keratin, they also affect textiles such as wool, fur and leather. Hair, dandruff and feathers are also on the menu, which is why they like to live close to people.

When they are fully grown, the larvae pupate. To do this, they drill holes in soft wood, styrofoam, cardboard and paper. The carpet beetles and the fur beetles are similar in their lifestyle to the bacon beetle, but are not interested in human food. Their destructive effect is therefore limited to carpets, furs and furs.

How do you recognize a bacon beetle infestation?

Bacon beetles leave visible holes in leather and wool textiles, as well as in furs. Doll covers, skins and perforated books, boxes and wooden boards are also good indicators that bacon beetle larvae may nest there. If you notice feeding damage and filamentous droppings in your storage cupboards, an infestation is also likely.

When you discover bacon beetles or bacon beetle larvae in your own four walls, the first thing is: don't panic! The insects do not transmit diseases. The arrow hair and the excrement of the larvae can trigger allergies. You should therefore remove them as soon as possible.

Löcher im Textil
Löcher im Textil

Like clothes moths, bacon beetles also eat woolen textiles.

Photo: iStock / coco312

Finding the larvae is difficult because they are afraid of light. They retreat to dark, warm places and build caves under floorboards, carpets and parquet, as well as behind the insulation layers of walls and behind drawers and cupboards. It is also a good idea to search leather clothing, fur coats, stuffed animals and insect collections.

In order to recognize the extent of the infestation, pheromone traps are worthwhile. They use messenger substances that attract the male bacon beetles. The small cards are provided with an adhesive strip so that the pests stick when touched. They are suitable for assessing whether large-scale control is necessary.

However, this method is not as effective to get rid of the bacon beetles. The insects that fall into the trap have often already reproduced. Even if they die, the next generation is taken care of.

How can you fight bacon beetles without chemicals?

In the case of vermin infestation with bacon beetles or carpet beetles, you do not always have to resort to chemical products. You can fight bacon beetles just as effectively with simple home remedies. The easiest way to remove the vermin mechanically. Once you have found the hiding place, vacuum the bacon beetles with a powerful vacuum cleaner and dispose of the pouch.

In order to catch the new generations as well, you have to repeat the procedure regularly for two to three months. In addition, you should clean all infested places. However, it is difficult to get the plague under control by just cleaning it up, since even the most careful seeker can overlook a hiding place. Therefore, you should always combine cleaning with other methods.

It is best to wash infected textiles at over 60 degrees, if possible without damaging the fabric. Alternatively, very low temperatures below minus 20 degrees kill the pests, but more slowly than the heat method.

Tip: You shouldn't heat or freeze contaminated food, just throw it away.

If the pests have made themselves comfortable under your floorboards or parquet strips, silicone is a solution. By closing all cracks and joints, you prevent the vermin from coming out again. Without food, both the beetles and their larvae die quickly. This method is very effective, but only works if the bacon beetles are really just under the floor.

A particularly ecological way of fighting bacon beetles is to find camp wasps. The parasitic insects do not build their own nest, but take the bacon beetle larvae as hosts. They use their stinger to drill a hole in the bacon beetle eggs and lay their own in it. If the larvae of the camp wasps hatch, they will eat the bacon beetle larvae that have not yet hatched. The life cycle of the pests comes to a standstill.

The camp wasps themselves are just 0.2 to 0.4 millimeters in size and do not sting. They live for about two weeks and then decompose into house dust. You can find the cards with the wasp eggs on the Internet or in specialist shops. The price for a card set starts at 25 euros. Many retailers deliver multiple sets of cards every three weeks. This ensures that the beneficial organisms really destroy all generations of bacon beetles.

Brotkäfer frei mit Lagererzwespe gegen Brotkäfer in der Küche
Brotkäfer frei mit Lagererzwespe gegen Brotkäfer in der Küche

Which remedies help against bacon beetles?

Insecticides based on pyrethrum are often the method of choice for vermin. The chrysanthemum flower toxin generally kills insects quickly and efficiently. If you want to fight bacon beetles with it, however, the success will not come. Bacon beetles live so secluded that they hardly enter the sprayed areas. You would therefore have to treat all hiding places with insecticides regularly and over a long period of time in order to decimate the population. However, this is not recommended because the poison is also harmful to other animals and humans.

Dust silicates such as diatomaceous earth, on the other hand, are more targeted. The powder that you can find in many hardware stores is made from petrified algae and sold in bottles or containers. It is harmless for humans and animals. The pests (bacon beetles / fur beetles / carpet beetles), on the other hand, dry out quickly after the first contact and die because the grains penetrate their shell with their sharp corners. The method is also inexpensive: you can get a bucket of 10 kg of diatomaceous earth in stores for around 20 euros.

advanced - Reine Kieselgur
advanced - Reine Kieselgur

If neither home remedies nor dust silicates help, there is often only the possibility of professional pest control. Experienced exterminators use a combination of several methods to remove the vermin. They often gasify the rooms with inert gases such as nitrogen or carbon dioxide so that the beetles suffocate. The costs depend on the effort and the size of the affected areas.

Kieselgur zur Bekämpfung von Speckkäfern
Kieselgur zur Bekämpfung von Speckkäfern

Diatomaceous earth consists of fine grains with invisible, razor-sharp edges.

Photo: iStock / Spitfire1973

How can you prevent bacon beetle infestation?

Bacon beetles or carpet and fur beetles only thrive where they find ideal conditions. Keep them away from your home with these simple tricks:

  • Store your supplies in sealed glass containers.
  • Check your food regularly to detect the signs of a possible infestation at an early stage.
  • Clean floors and attics regularly.
  • Tap carpets at least once a month.
  • Watch out for pitting for leather and wool clothing and furs.
  • Avoid traps in the basement or in the attic if rats are infected, since dead rats attract the pests.
  • Place mosquito screens on your windows.
  • Seal all cracks in the floorboards, parquet joints and skirting boards.
Lebensmittel-Aufbewahrung in der Küche
Lebensmittel-Aufbewahrung in der Küche

Airtight mason jars keep pests away from your kitchen.

Photo: iStock / Andrei Dragomir

Conclusion: fight bacon beetles naturally

If you have discovered bacon beetles, carpet beetles, fur beetles or their larvae in your home, you should fight them as soon as possible to prevent health problems and material damage. With pheromone traps, you can reliably assess the infestation. If the pests are only in a few places, natural home remedies promise good results. Vacuuming and cleaning the affected areas is always the first step. You should wash or freeze textiles at high temperatures, but contaminated food should be put in the trash can.

In the case of a large infestation, a silicate product such as diatomaceous earth is recommended. Due to the action of the powder, the insects dry and die. The small, harmless camp wasps are also a tried-and-tested biological means of combating bacon beetles. Conventional insecticides, on the other hand, are not as effective because treating all hiding places is difficult and harmful to health. Exterminators often fight bacon beetles with inert gases such as carbon dioxide or nitrogen. This method is efficient for a long time, but it is expensive. We therefore advise that professional help only be used in the case of a large infestation if the natural control of the bacon beetle is unsuccessful.

Timo Jochmann

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