Rice Weevil

(Sitophilus oryzae L.)

Introduction: The rice weevil is approximately 1/8” long and are a dull reddish brown. Their thorax is heavily pitted with deep punctures and they have four light reddish yellow spots on their elytra (wing covers). Rice weevils are typically found in grain storage facilities or processing plants, infesting wheat, oats, rye, barley, rice, and corn, however, they can also be found in the home.

Habits: The rice weevil is worldwide in distribution and has been reported to feed upon rye, buckwheat, beans, stored seed cotton, grapes, cashews, cereals, apples, and wheat products of all kinds. Adult rice weevils can fly and are attracted to lights. The adult female rice weevil will lay an average of 4 eggs per day and may live up to five months. The food for larvae is slightly restrictive, since it must pass its entire larval period in a single seed. Females will eat a cavity to deposit an egg into and the larvae, upon hatching, will feed on the inside of the grain kernel. This feeding results in an emptied husk being all that remains. Rice weevils will also feign death when disturbed. They do this by drawing their legs up close to their body, falling and remaining still until they believe the threat has passed.

Control: To keep rice weevils out of the home, all grains, pastas and similar food products should be appropriately stored in glass or plastic containers with tight lids. Rotate product with consistency using old food items before new ones to help reduce the risk of a rice weevil infestation. If a large infestation occurs, a trained professional to help with the removal of the damaging stored-product pests is recommended. Cook’s Pest Control offers professional treatments for the control of stored product pests and our pest management professionals are thoroughly trained to address all your pest problems.


About Stored Product Pests

  • Stored food pests feed on dried goods and food items, like bird seed, dried beans, dog food, pancake mix, cereal, rice, and chocolate.
  • These pests can be a year-round nuisance because they live and breed within food in our temperature-controlled houses.
  • Most of them generate enough water to survive simply by digesting food, so they can prosper in food that is almost devoid of moisture.