Google Translate Disclaimer

A number of pages on the Government of Saskatchewan`s web site have been professionally translated in French. These translations are identified by a yellow text box that resembles the link below and can be found in the right hand rail of the page. The home page for French-language content on this site can be found here:

Renseignements en Français

Where an official translation is not available, Google™ Translate can be used. Google™ Translate is a free online language translation service that can translate text and web pages into different languages. Translations are made available to increase access to Government of Saskatchewan content for populations whose first language is not English.

The results of software-based translation do not approach the fluency of a native speaker or possess the skill of a professional translator. The translation should not be considered exact, and may include incorrect or offensive language Government of Saskatchewan does not warrant the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of any information translated by this system. Some files or items cannot be translated, including graphs, photos, and other file formats such as portable document formats (PDFs).

Any person or entities that rely on information obtained from the system does so at his or her own risk. Government of Saskatchewan is not responsible for any damage or issues that may possibly result from using translated website content. If you have any questions about Google™ Translate, please visit: Google™ Translate FAQs.

Insects in Stored Grain

By Kim Stonehouse, PAg, Crops Extension Specialist, Tisdale

December 2019

Steel bins

Regularly monitoring stored grain for insects is always important and can alleviate many problems at the time of delivery to the elevator. The Canada Grain Act has a zero tolerance policy for any insects that feed on whole, sound grain delivered to elevators.

The most sensitive way to detect insects in stored grain is by using a probe trap. The trap should be placed in the top centre of the bin because it is where the first signs of a problem commonly occur.

Insects in stored grain feed are found on the grain or fungus that may be developing within the stored grain. Grain feeding insects include the rusty grain beetle, red flour beetle and saw-toothed grain beetle. The rusty grain beetle is the most common insect found feeding on stored grain in Canada and heavy infestations can cause the grain to heat and spoil. These beetles are cold hardy and can survive temperatures below zero degrees.

Fungus feeders include the foreign grain beetle, grain mites and psocids (book lice). The foreign grain beetle will also feed on grain if the moisture content is at the high end of the acceptable range. Insects that feed on fungus cannot survive on dry grain.

There are a number of methods that can be used to control both grain and fungus feeders. Mechanical methods tend to be the most economical and do not require any special licensing. Many of the above noted insects can be killed by: reducing the core grain temperature for a period of time, moving the grain several times during mid-winter, moving grain using a grain vac or passing the grain through a heated grain dryer for a length of time.

In warmer conditions, treatment options for grain being rotated to a clean bin include: Diatomaceous Earth, Malathion and Phostoxin. It is important to note that oilseed crops, including canola and flax, should not be stored in bins treated with any of these products. For malt barley or milling oats check with your grain buyer before using Malathion or Phostoxin.

Always read the product label to ensure that it is registered for use in the grain to be treated and on the insect to be controlled. Follow label instructions for effective and safe application. With some products the use and sale is restricted to licensed pesticide applicators with a valid fumigation licence.

For more information on preventing and controlling insects in stored grain, please refer to Insects and Mould in Stored Grain or contact your local Crops Extension Specialist.

We need your feedback to improve Help us improve