Red Flour Beetle


Actual Size: 3.5 mm

Characteristics: Small, flattened; reddish-brown. The antennae get thicker at the tip.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: Yes, and can fly short distances.

Habitat: Primarily infests grains and are most frequently found in pantries.


  • Can live three or more years.
  • Cannot feed on whole undamaged grain.
  • Found in temperate areas but will survive cold weather if indoors.

Red Flour Beetles in San Angelo

Several types of beetles are categorized as flour beetles due to their tendency to infest flour and grain-based goods. The red flour beetle and the confused flour beetle are significant members of this group. These pests target stored grain items like flour, cereals, spices, pasta, cake mix, dried flowers, and museum specimens. The red flour beetle can fly short distances and prefers warmer environments. Flour beetles consume grain dust and milled cereals, but they cannot damage intact and healthy grains.

Red Flour Beetle Habitat

Red flour beetles exhibit year-round breeding in heated buildings, even during winter. They inhabit not just infested grain products, but also reside in cracks and crevices where grains might have spilled. Flour beetles infest a range of items including cereal, cake mix, cornmeal, crackers, dry pet food, chocolate, nuts, and seeds (like birdseed). Both the mature beetles and small, pale larvae are present in infested products. Adult beetles frequently wander away from infested materials, making appearances in pantries, cupboards, and various spots within the home.

Red Flour Beetle Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

The red flour beetle doesn’t bite or sting, yet it might trigger allergic reactions. While not a disease carrier, its numerous deceased bodies, shed skins, and fecal pellets can emit strong, unpleasant odors in stored grain. Usual indicators of an infestation include spotting live beetles crawling or flying around the house, discovering them in flour or cereal items, and noticing “leaky packages.” Traces of meal or grain spilling from a package or small holes gnawed through packaging indicate the presence of an infestation. Contact your local pantry pest control experts for help with red flour beetle problems.