WSU Extension


Food and Fabric
Carpet beetles
Casemaking clothes moth
Cupboard beetle
Drugstore beetle
Indian meal moth
Mediterranean flour moth
Mites in stored foods
Psocids (booklice or barklice)
Sawtooth grain beetle
Spider beetle
Whiteshouldered house moth

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Caption: Sawtooth grain beetle
Photo by: Ken Gray
Sawtooth grain beetle
(revision date: 7/14/2015)

Use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for successful pest management.

The sawtoothed grain beetle and its look-alike relative, the merchant grain beetle, are slender, flattened, reddish-brown beetles that measure about 1/8 inch in length. They exhibit saw-like teeth along the edge of the prothorax (shoulder area). These beetles feed on a wide variety of foods. While some come in from outdoors, most come in on purchased food, particularly dry pet food. These beetles can enter a home in large and disturbing numbers to feed on food, such as bird seed or pet food, which mice or other rodents have stored in wall voids.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Don’t store excess foodstuffs, such as grains, cereals, baking mixes, etc., for long periods of time.
  • If grain beetles become apparent, locate the food source immediately and get rid of it. Then do a thorough inspection of all other stored foods.
  • Pests can get into most cardboard packaging, so store foodstuffs in tightly-sealed containers if they are not going to be used in the near future.
  • Keep dry pet foods away from the general pantry area and in a tightly-sealed container.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

None recommended.


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Caption: Sawtooth grain beetle
Photo by: Ken Gray