Can powderpost beetles infest cardboard boxes? I’m wondering if it’s safe to store a bunch of the boxes in a room that’s already infested.
If you review our POWDERPOST BEETLE CONTROL ARTICLE, you’ll learn the basic biology of this insect which is explained at the beginning of the article. As you’ll learn, adults emerge from infested wood and one of the first things they do is seek a new place on which to mate and lay eggs. Remember, cardboard is made from wood and wood by products. It has lots of voids and spaces and in fact can serve as a great location for many pests to live and nest. So to answer your question; it is entirely possible for boxes stored in a room where powderpost beetles are known to be active to in turn get infested. Books and other paper products are powderpost beetle targets and no doubt boxes would be too if kept in the right environment. However, certain conditions would have to be met for this to happen.
First and foremost, the cardboard would have to be “pure” enough to allow them to live. There are lots of extra ingredients that make their way into the cardboard making process. Many of these extra “ingredients” could be dangerous to insects acting as a type of “insecticide”. Due to the wide range of cardboard making processes being done, there is no easy way to test any one box to see if it’s powderpost beetle friendly or not. For this reason it makes most sense to just assume any one box can harbor an active infestation and with that approach, you should be able to decide what to do.
If the boxes are to be stored for any length of time, you should consider treating them with something like PT-PHANTOM AEROSOL. This product goes on dry, lasts a long time and is just about odorless. It will do a good job of holding off most any pest including PPB should they attempt to land and forage inside the box. Alternatively, you could opt to treat the room where the beetles are active if this main problem has not yet been addressed. I’m sure one of the treatment options listed in our article will do the job.
Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:
Powderpost Beetle Control Article: http://www.powderpostbeetles.com/powderpost-beetle-control
Phantom Aerosol: http://www.bugspray.com/item/phantom_aerosol.html