Silken fungus beetles
Secondary pest; Fungus feeder
- Adults are small (2 to 3 mm long), oval shaped and flattened.
- Adults range in colour from reddish brown to dark brown and may have yellowish or reddish markings on the elytra.
- In many species, adults have fine hairs on the elytra and pronotum.
- Thorax shape may be diagnostic of the species and may be angled or sculptured with small projections or serrations.
- Larvae are cylindrical, flattened and yellow brown in colour.
- Larvae are active with the head, thoracic legs and urogomphi clearly visible.
- The most common species is Cryptophagus varus Woodroffe and Coombs.
- Does not feed on commodity but rather on associated microorganisms
- May infest cereal grains, wheat, barley, oats, bran, rice, flour, bread, dried fruit, mouldy plant and animal materials
Signs of infestation
- Mouldy, damp grain is often indicative of the presence of the beetles rather than the other way around
- Both adults and larvae feed on fungal spores and hyphae and do not cause direct damage to the commodity
- Adults are capable of transmitting fungal spores and may promote excessive mold growth in storage
How to control
- Cryptophagus spp. are found across Canada.
- Cryptophagus varus is found across Canada.
- Granaries, warehouses, mills, cellars, houses
- Commonly found in granaries in the prairie provinces
- Does not directly damage crop but feeds on associated moulds and fungi indicating poor storage conditions
- Adults are long-lived and can fly
- Females lay eggs singly on or among the fungal hyphae
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