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Dried fruit beetle

The dried fruit beetle, Carpophilus hemipterus (L.) (Nitidulidae : Coleoptera) is one of the major pests on dried figs in Aegean region of Turkiye. The dried fruit beetle is found worldwide, especially in regions where fruits are grown, processed and stored. It is a prominent pest in California. This beetle attacks both fresh, ripened fruit and dried fruits prior to storage and packaging. This beetle is especially fond of figs and dates and is a common pest of raisins.

Dried fruit beetle

Dried fruit beetle

The dried fruit beetle is brown in colour and about 2 – 4 mm long. The wing covers have two yellow spots, are short and do not completely cover the abdomen. The antennae are slender with the last three segments distinctly enlarged. Larvae are initially white (darkening to grey as they mature), have four abdominal spines and grow up to 6 – 7 mm in length.

Life Cycle : Eggs are laid singly, on ripe or fermenting fruit, in the field or in stored-products. Eggs take 1-4 days to hatch. Larval development is completed in 4-14 days. Pupation usually takes place in heavy soil in field populations, but in stored-products, pupation takes place within the infested commodity. In warm areas or within heated buildings breeding is continuous and there are several generations per year. Pupation occurs after a prepupal period of 3-8 days, and adults emerge 4-16 days later.

Dried fruit beetle larva

Dried fruit beetle larva

the development cycle is about 12 days at warm temperatures (32.2°C) and up to 42 days at cooler temperatures (18.3°C). When temperatures are too low for breeding, the beetles hibernate as mature larvae, pupae or adults in the soil, stored commodity, or fruit left on the ground. Though adults can live for more than a year, males and females have an average lifespan of 146 to 103 days, respectively for the dried fruit beetle. Corn sap beetle longevity was greatest at the highest humidity (134 days at 90% rh and 20°C and 75 days at 70% rh at 25°C).

Damage :Driedfruit beetle can be found in a wide variety of ripe and decomposting fruit. It is a serious pest of dried fruit and has also been found in stored corn, cornmeal, wheat, oats, rice, beans, nuts, peanuts, cottonseed, copra, spices, drugs, bread, sugar, and honey.

Management: Purchase dried foods in quantities small enough to be used up in a short period of time. Use oldest products before newer ones, and opened packages before unopened ones. Inspect packages or bulk products before buying. Packages should be sealed and unbroken. Also check the freshness packaging date. Look for evidence of insects, including holes in the packaging or wrapping. Store insect-free foods in tightly closed glass, metal, or heavy plastic containers. Refrigerate or freeze small amounts of highly susceptible foods.

Dried fruit beetle damage

Dried fruit beetle Damage

Keep food storage areas clean. Do not allow crumbs or spilled food to accumulate. Remove and discard old, unused products and inspect the remainder. Thoroughly clean cracks and corners with a vacuum cleaner. Also check and clean areas where pet food and birdseed are stored. Washing with detergents, ammonia, or bleach will not prevent insect infestation. There is no evidence to prove that placing bay leaves or sticks of spearmint gum in a cupboard will prevent or deter stored food insect pests.

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