Pest Away Tips

8 Tips for Preventing and Controlling Spider Beetle Infestations

Spider Beetles: Characteristics, Habits, Prevention, and ControlHave you ever found small beetles crawling around your stored food? While it’s not unusual to have insects in stored food, it’s worth checking if these little creatures are spider beetles.

Spider beetles belong to the Ptinidae family and are notorious for infesting stored food and homes. In this article, we will explore the characteristics and habits of spider beetles, how to identify them, and how to prevent and control their infestations.

Characteristics and Habits:

Spider beetles are small, usually less than 3mm long, and have a round body with a reddish-brown color. They get their name from their long legs that can make them look like tiny spiders.

Spider beetles can be found both indoors and outdoors, but they tend to thrive in warm and humid conditions. Their favorite habitats are stored food products such as grains, cereals, spices, and pet food.

Spider beetles have a fairly rapid reproductive cycle; their female lays up to 100 eggs, which hatch within a week. It’s worth noting that they are adept fliers and can move from one location to another quickly, particularly if their primary food source is depleted.

Spider beetles aren’t particularly picky, and they may consume a wide variety of products, including animal skins, feathers, and even books. Spider beetles are often mistaken for other bugs, including bed bugs, ticks, and roaches.

Therefore, it’s crucial to identify them accurately to take appropriate control measures. Identification:

Spider beetles are easy to identify if you know what to look for.

They are reddish-brown with a round body, and they have long legs that can make them look like tiny spiders. Other bugs that they are commonly mistaken for include bed bugs, ticks, and roaches.

Bed bugs tend to be smaller and have a flatter body. Ticks, on the other hand, have round or oval bodies and eight legs.

Roaches tend to be larger and have a flat, oval-shaped body. By comparing the characteristics of these bugs, you can identify spider beetles with higher accuracy.

Prevention and Control:

Identification is the first step in preventing spider beetle infestations. Regular inspection of your stored food will help you to detect any spider beetles and nip the problem in the bud before it becomes widespread.

It’s also worth noting that spider beetles can enter your home through holes and gaps, so sealing them up is essential. Vacuuming frequently is an effective way to remove spider beetles that may have entered your home or workplace.

You can also use sticky traps to capture and release spider beetles. If the infestation is extensive, you may need to dispose of the infested food products, containers, and pantry shelves.

If you’re planning to use insecticides, make sure you read the label carefully and follow the instructions to the letter. Be cautious when treating food storage areas, and avoid contaminating food products with the insecticides.

If you prefer a natural solution, consider using diatomaceous earth or boric acid, which are both effective and low in toxicity. Conclusion:

Spider beetles are common pests that can wreak havoc on stored food products.

They are attracted to warm and humid environments, and they can infest your home quickly. However, by taking preventative measures such as regular inspection, vacuuming, and sealing holes, you can avoid spider beetle infestations.

In case of an infestation, you can use sticky traps, diatomaceous earth, or boric acid to control their population. By using these simple tips, you can keep your home spider beetle free.

Behavior and Biology:

Spider beetles are known to be scavengers and feed on a range of food sources. They have been found to consume wood and plant materials, as well as droppings from animals such as bats.

Additionally, they tend to feed on grains and other dried food products that are stored in households. Spider beetles require a moist environment to survive, so they are often found in areas where humidity levels are high.

Spider beetles have an average lifespan of one year. Although they do not pose any significant health hazards to humans, they do have the ability to bite in self-defense or when agitated.

Therefore, it is best to avoid handling them and to seek medical attention if bitten. Shiny Spider Beetles:

Identification and Similarity to Bed Bugs:

Some species of spider beetles, known as Gibbiums, have shiny bodies and are often mistaken for bed bugs.

These beetles can be identified by their color, which is usually a dark brown or black, and their compact shape. Misidentification of Gibbiums as bed bugs can cause unnecessary alarm, particularly during pest inspections in apartments and other shared living spaces.

Habitat and Prevention:

Shiny spider beetles require specific environmental conditions to thrive. They generally live in environments where food is limited, such as cracks and crevices in furniture, walls, and other household items.

These bugs tend to stay close to the food source, which is often human food like cereals, grains, and other dried products. They can also feed on animal feces, dead insects, and other organic material.

Preventing infestations of shiny spider beetles can be achieved through several techniques. One of the most effective ways to prevent an infestation is by ensuring that all food items are stored in sealed containers.

This will eliminate the food source, making the area less attractive to these bugs. Additionally, regularly vacuuming areas where food crumbs or debris may accumulate is essential in preventing these bugs from taking hold.

If you do have a shiny spider beetle infestation, capturing and releasing them is an effective way to control their population. You can use sticky traps to catch them and then relocate them outdoors.

Another way to control shiny spider beetles is through the use of mattress encasements. These encasements can keep the bugs away from your bed, and they are convenient and easy to install.


Knowing how to identify spider beetles, their feeding habits, and their habitat is essential in preventing infestations. In cases where an infestation is present, there are several ways to control and prevent further outbreaks.

By taking preventative measures and promptly addressing any infestation, you can protect your home and health from these pesky bugs. Comparison:

Spider Beetles vs Bed Bugs:

Spider beetles and bed bugs both pose a threat to homes, causing significant discomfort and inconvenience for homeowners.

Bed bugs are bloodsuckers that feed on human blood, whereas spider beetles are scavengers and feed on a range of materials. When identifying bed bugs, look for small, reddish-brown insects hiding in the crevices of your bed or mattress.

Meanwhile, spider beetles are small, brown bugs with round bodies and long legs.

Prevention of these two types of bugs is different.

Mattress encasements can protect you from bed bugs by creating a barrier between the bed and bugs. Using sticky traps for spider beetles is another way to control their population.

However, if an infestation is present, intervention from a professional exterminator is vital. Spider Beetles vs Roaches:

Roaches and spider beetles have different body shapes and sizes, and their behavior is also distinct.

Roaches have flattened, oval-shaped bodies, while spider beetles have small, round bodies with elongated legs. Roaches are larger than spider beetles and prefer moist environments, while spider beetles prefer dry environments.

Roaches are also known to carry diseases and can contaminate food with bacteria, whereas spider beetles are not known to carry diseases. Control:

Prevention Measures:

To prevent spider beetles, implement preventative measures such as cleaning regularly and keeping food stored in airtight containers.

Keeping the kitchen area clean can help to reduce the chances of spider beetles infesting your food. Additionally, using a dehumidifier can help eliminate the moist environment spider beetles thrive in.

Sticky Traps and Vacuuming:

Sticky traps can help catch spider beetles before they infest your food items. By placing these traps in areas where spider beetles are commonly found, you can reduce their population quickly.

Vacuuming is another effective way of removing spider beetles and their eggs. Vacuuming the affected areas frequently is a long-term solution to keeping spider beetles in check.

Cleaning Procedures:

Dusting and cleaning shelves are essential for removing spider beetles’ hiding spots. Its also crucial to clean books and break down cardboard boxes to prevent slug and spider beetle infestations.

Keeping all areas clean and dry can help prevent infestations. Avoid leaving food sources for spider beetles, which include crumbs and food debris.


Spider beetles have different characteristics, feeding habits, and habitats than bed bugs and roaches. By knowing how to identify these bugs and their behaviors, prevention measures and effective control strategies can be implemented, such as using sticky traps and vacuuming frequently, the use of dehumidifiers, and keeping a clean living environment.

Following these preventative measures can help to prevent infestations and preserve your homes living space. In conclusion, understanding the characteristics and behaviors of pests such as spider beetles, bed bugs, and roaches is crucial in implementing effective prevention and control measures.

By identifying these pests accurately, we can take the necessary steps to prevent or intervene in a timely and effective manner. Prevention measures such as regular cleaning, vacuuming, and using airtight containers can reduce the chances of infestations.

Sticky traps and mattress encasements can control populations while professional extermination may be necessary in extreme cases. Taking these steps not only protects our homes and families but also helps ensure a healthier and pest-free environment.

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