Powder Post Beetles

Powder Post Beetles
Size: Less than 1/4"
Color: Reddish black
Infestation: Hardwood
Questions & Answers : How to get rid of Powderpost beetles (47)
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Powderpost Beetle Control

Lyctids, or more commonly known as powderpost beetles, receive their names from a unique behavior that the larvae exhibits inside their galleries in the wood. The larvae will produce an extremely fine, dusty, or powder-like frass, hence their name, powderpost beetles. Powderpost beetles are all over the world, including the United States. As a matter of fact, there are actually 11 different species of powderpost beetles that can be found in the United States.

Powderpost Beetle Identification

The size will range depending on the species of powderpost beetles. Generally, the powderpost beetle size will be about 1 - 7 mm long on average. The bodies of powderpost beetles are elongated and narrow. They are also flat from top to bottom. Both sides of powderpost beetles run almost parallel to each other, which means that the head, the pronotum, which is the plate-like structure that covers the thorax, and the elytra, which primarily serves to protect the hindwings, are all about equal width to each other. The color will range depending on the species. In general, they tend to be be reddish-brown to black in color.

The larvae of powderpost beetles look quite different from fully matured powderpost beetles. Depending on the species of powderpost beetles, the developed larvae are about 6mm in length. Their entire body is white in color and is curved presenting a C-shape. Powderpost beetle damage will primarily be done by the larvae as they leave behind flour-like or powder-like frass as they create tunnels in the wood as they are feeding. Most infestations are only discovered after a homeowner sees evidence of holes in the wood surrounding his property.

Powderpost Beetle Damage

Many homeowners will not notice a powderpost beetle infestation until they notice small, round holes in the wood that they have never seen before. These holes are made when a fully matured adult powderpost beetle emerges from the wood. However, much of the damage is done by larvae of powderpost beetles as they feed on the wood. All of the larvae feeding is done internally as they create tunnels, therefore, many people will not know the extent of their infestation until they actually see the holes.

Powderpost beetles prefer hardwoods over softwood because hardwoods have many pores useful for their egg laying process. Softwoods on the other hand are not as porous therefore, they tend to stay away from softwoods. As well as having a large pore size, powderpost beetles infest wood with high starch content and infest dryer woods. Some of these woods include oak wood, ash wood, mahogany wood and bamboo wood. Homeowners may notice that infestations seem concentrated in areas like their flooring, window sills and panes, door frames and other interior furniture.

Powderpost Beetle Prevention

Prevention is crucial so that a powderpost beetle infestation cannot spread to other parts of the house. Every homeowner should be aware of some DIY preventative measures for powderpost beetles. These include close inspection of wood materials that are brought into the house. Inspection should take place prior to any product purchasing. Using proper techniques to finish the wood and to dry the wood will also help in preventing a powderpost beetle infestation. Using proper air-dried wood, chemically treated wood, heating and cooling systems to speed up the wood drying processes and sealing wood surfaces are all proper methods to prevent future infestations. Also, if there has been a previous infestation of powderpost beetles, all infested wood should be discarded or removed and treated.

How to Get Rid of Powderpost Beetles

There are several methods that will work to kill powderpost beetles. Liquid insecticides that are properly labeled for powderpost beetles are the best solution for effective powderpost beetle control. Unfortunately, for sealed, varnished or painted wood, treatment will not be able to penetrate inside to reach the larvae and eggs. Therefore, if the wood is painted, sealed or varnished, the surface must be sanded or bare to treat and eliminate powderpost beetles. Liquid insecticides can be injected into the wood and/or painted on the surface area. For smaller infestations, properly labeled pressurized aerosol sprays will work great as a contact kill for the open places where you know powderpost beetles are present. All product labels for pesticides must carefully be reviewed before they are applied.

Do You Have a Question about this Product? Ask Our Experts!


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Q. I have a framed picture that got powder post beetles. I got rid of the frame and put the wood-covered canvas it in the freezer to kill any who may have gotten onto that wood. How long do I need to keep it there to kill them? I am worried about damaging the oil-painted canvas.
A.   Unfortunately, we do not have any information on how to get rid of Powder post beetles in freezing temperatures. We do recommend that you use Nuvan Pro Strips in an air tight sealed bags and leaving the canvas in the bag for two weeks.
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18
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Q. Can termite treatment kill the powder dust beetle in bamboo?
A.   That will depend on the product. Most termiticides can be used for a variety of wood pests like wood infesting beetles, but you will have to check the product label before application.
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16
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Q. Few Boards have powder post beetles holes
We installed finished bamboo flooring in our, now 2-yr old home. We have seen three specific floor boards had the dust and pin holes. Is there any way to know if they are continuing to breed in our house since the wood is finished. Is this isolated or a volcano simmering under the floor? How do we know if we need to treat?
A.   If you have seen the dust from the pin holes, you may have an active infestation. To treat for wood, the wood should be bare so that the product like Boracare will soak through the wood rather than just stay on the surface. For finished bamboo, that can be difficult to do and the only real suggestion that we have is that you paint over and inject through the holes on the surface. If left alone, the infestation may spread rather than stay isolated.
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16
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Q. We have been in our home 20 years,just today an ext. told us we had powder post beetles. Our basement does have a dirt floor but we have plastic over it and we can walk in there. Our house is on cement blocks. My question is this, would beetles be in our wood after all time?
A.   Powder post beetles can infest wood at any time. We would recommend using Boracare to treat the infested wooden area.
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15
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Q. We have powder post beetles in our 2 year old Ash tongue and groove flooring%u2014all new construction. I read a previous post about the person with the pine floor so I understand we have to sand the surface before we treat the floor with Boracare. Will the Boracare stain the Ash flooring? We have removed some boards which have been reduced to dust.
A.   Boracare will not stain wood and will dry clear. However, you should test an inconspicuous area for staining before application.
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14
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Q. will termador dust work on powder post beetles.
A.   Termidor dust is only labeled for pre treatment of wood or for the control of termites. For powder post beetle treatment we would recommend Boracare.
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14
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Q. What is the most effective pesticide for treatment of pine trees that have been partially debarked by site work, so post beetles do not infect pine trees?
A.   Unfortunately, we do not have any products that will prevent powderpost beetles from infecting the wood. Moreover, we do not have any products that can be applied to the bare wood of the live pine trees without killing them. We apologize for the inconvenience.
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Q. Can you ship this product to africa (Ethiopia)
Poderneets control
A.   We can ship internationally, but it will depend on the product and where it is being shipped to. Unfortunately, for many chemical products, we will not be able to ship but for products that do not have a chemical content, we are able to ship almost anywhere in the world. For inquiries on a specific product, please call us at 1-800-788-4142.
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11
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Q. I have found what seems to be large powder post beetles in two hybrid willow trees I have.
What can I do so they don't get in my house? Is cutting down the trees sufficient to get rid of the beetles? I find lg. holes in the ground nearby the trees.
A.   Thank you for contacting us with your concern. Just cutting down the trees will not solve your powder post beetle problem. You will need to treat the wood with chemicals. The best pesticide to use for powder post beetle infestations is BoraCare
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11
Votes
Q. powder post beetle infestation
I have powder post beetle infestation on tongue and groove pine inside the house. Small problem. Best treatment option. It is impractical to remove pine. Please advise.
A.  

Boracare is one of our highly recommended products for powder post beetle treatment.

If the wood that is needing to be treated has a finished surface, it is recommended that you sand down the finishing before applying the Boracare.

This will allow the Boracare to perform at its full potential, penetrating deep into the unfinished surface through the infested wood.

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