Harrier Pest Control

Mealworm Beetle

Mealworm Beetle

Mealworm Beetle

Tenebrioninae are a large subfamily of the darkling beetles (Tenebrionidae), containing among others the flour beetles.

Many of these robust and usually mid-sized beetles have elytra with some sort of corrugation on the upperside. They are usually colored blackish, dark brown or grey, and often have a satiny sheen; they are generally not glossy (some are outright matte) and few are metallic. The body is shaped like a medical capsule or like a bullet; the legs can be shortish and stout or long and spindly. They eat both fresh and decaying vegetation as well as vegetable produce, and several are commercially important pests e.g. of flour and other cereal products.

Tenebrioninae are eaten by large invertebrates and small vertebrates, such as birds, rodents, and lizards. The larval stages of several species are cultured as feeder insects for captive insectivores, and include mealworms and mini mealworms.

The Mealworm Beetle (Tenebrio molitor) is commonly used as food for terrestrial amniotes kept in terraria. Other Tenebrio and Tribolium species are also bred as animal food. The Red Flour Beetle (Tribolium castaneum) is a popular genetics laboratory animal and model organism, especially in studies of intragenomic conflict and



population ecology. Several species of Tenebrio and Tribolium (e.g. Confused Flour Beetle T. confusum, or T. destructor) and other genera (e.g. Gnathocerus cornutus) are pests of cereal and flour silos and other storage facilities.

The Mealworm Beetle is usually encountered by Harrier Pest Control when dealing with bird droppings which provide ideal breeding conditions for this insect.

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