Rice Weevils

Facts, Identification, & Control

Latin Name

Sitophilus oryzae


What Do They Look Like?

  • Size: Adults measure approximately 4 mm in length and their snouts can grow as long as 1 mm.
  • Color: Rice weevils are reddish brown in color.
  • Characteristics: Their wings feature faint yellow or red patterns. They have deep, irregular pits behind their heads.

How Did I Get Rice Weevils?

Rice weevils can infest items at any point in production, from processing plants or grocery stores to homes. Storing food products for long periods of time without properly sealing containers may increase the chances of infestations in kitchens and pantries.

These insects can also find entryways through open doors and windows, but most infestations come from stored goods. Infested grains brought into homes cause the majority of issues with these pests, including:

  • Bird seed
  • Corn
  • Rice

How Serious Are Rice Weevils?

Most homeowners find their presence repulsive, and the food products wasted from infestations can be costly.

Rice weevils are harmless to humans and pets and do not:

  • Bite
  • Carry disease
  • Cause structural damage
  • Sting

Signs of Infestation

Signs of rice weevil infestations include:

  • Dead or alive weevils in grains or food
  • Holes in grains or food packaging

How Do I Get Rid of Rice Weevils?

What Orkin Does
Your local Orkin technician is trained to help manage rice weevils and similar pests. Since every building or home is different, your Orkin technician will design a unique program for your situation.

Orkin can provide the right solution to keep rice weevils in their place and out of your home or business.

Behavior, Diet, & Habits

What Do They Eat?
Contrary to their name, rice weevils feed on a variety of grains and processed cereal goods, including:

  • Barley
  • Corn
  • Macaroni
  • Oats
  • Rye
  • Sorghum

Geographical Range
Rice weevils are troublesome pests that live in warm, agricultural habitats such as the southern United States.

Life Cycle

Female rice weevils are capable of laying four eggs a day and can produce up to 300 eggs in their lifetime. They perforate kernels or seeds to lay single eggs inside. These affected grains are then sealed with gelatinous secretions. Larvae then consume the kernels from inside out, leaving behind emptied husks.

In colder temperatures, the life cycle of rice weevils may last longer than 32 days. On average, larvae emerge within three days and develop into pupae within 18. Adults emerge after 6 days from the husk and can live as long as 6 months.

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