Sawtoothed Grain Beetle


Actual Size: ⅛”

Characteristics: Slender and flat bodies with brown coloration.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: Yes, but do not fly.

Habitat: Generally found in homes or food manufacturing plants inside of dried goods such as bread, nuts, or seeds.


  • Prefers smaller crumbs or dust from grains.
  • Has 6 tiny saw-like “teeth” on each side of the abdomen.
  • Accesses homes in New Jersey through infested products purchased from grocery stores.

Sawtoothed Grain Beetles in North Jersey

Nicknamed for the six tooth-like spikes on the sides of their abdomen, the sawtoothed grain beetle is a major problem for home and business owners in New Jersey. These pests are notorious for invading kitchens, grocery stores, and grain storage facilities in search of dried food products. They often get indoors by sneaking through poorly sealed food containers, which they can easily access thanks to their small and flat bodies. In addition to contaminating food products, sawtoothed grain beetles can promote mold growth by causing moisture accumulation. Though they look similar to the merchant grain beetle, the sawtoothed grain beetle cannot fly.

Sawtoothed Grain Beetle Habitat

Unfortunately, sawtoothed grain beetles are a frequent problem for food storage or manufacturing facilities, as well as home pantries. They primarily feed on various dry goods such as cereal, dry pasta, candy, nuts, and bread; that said, they typically prefer small crumbs and dust instead of full intact kernels. Sawtoothed grain beetles also breed quickly, with females laying up to 250 eggs at a time inside of cracked grain kernels. While the larvae cause the majority of damage to food products, you’re more likely to encounter a full-grown adult. If you notice beetles crawling around the pantry area, you likely have an infestation somewhere in your kitchen.

Sawtoothed Grain Beetle Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

Sawtoothed grain beetles are not aggressive and do not have the ability to bite or sting. That said, they can be a real nuisance and can spoil large amounts of stored food. Since they are so small, they can easily penetrate sealed cardboard boxes or plastic packaging. By laying eggs in your food and promoting mold growth, they can render your snacks inedible. If you run a food manufacturing facility, it’s particularly crucial to avoid these beetles, as they can spread quickly and ruin your products.

If you have sawtoothed grain beetles in your North Jersey property, contact your local pantry pest control experts for help. We know how to quickly and efficiently remove them so you can rest assured that your food is bug-free.