Mealworms are a common pantry pest, as well as a bait-hook staple for fishing and something to feed to bird, reptile or fish pets. In places where entomophagy – cooking and eating bugs – is culturally acceptable, mealworms are a popular menu item. But in the kitchen or pantry, mealworms spell trouble, because if you eat the larvae with the breakfast cereal it’s feeding upon, you may end up with a rather unpleasant tummyache. Fortunately, the darkling beetle’s preferred breeding environment is in accumulated piles of spilled grain located in dark and damp places, so if your pantry is clean and your stores of grain are kept in dry, sealed containers, you shouldn’t have a problem with mealworms.
Poor sanitation provides a harborage for mealworms and adult darkling beetles. Keep a clean kitchen and pantry, and mealworms shouldn’t be a problem. If they are, your Clark Pest Control technician will know the quickest route to controlling them.
Latin name: Tenebrio molitor, T. obscurus