Oryzaephilus surinamensis (saw toothed grain beetle)
- Taxonomic Tree
- Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature
- Distribution Table
- Habitat List
- Hosts/Species Affected
- Host Plants and Other Plants Affected
- Growth Stages
- List of Symptoms/Signs
- Biology and Ecology
- Natural enemies
- Notes on Natural Enemies
- Pathway Vectors
- Plant Trade
- Impact Summary
- Detection and Inspection
- Prevention and Control
- Distribution Maps
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PicturesTop of page
IdentityTop of page
Preferred Scientific Name
- Oryzaephilus surinamensis (Linnaeus)
Preferred Common Name
- saw toothed grain beetle
Other Scientific Names
- Dermestes surinamensis Linnaeus
- Silvanus surinamensis Linnaeus
- Sylvanus surinamensis Linnaeus
International Common Names
- Spanish: carcoma dentada de los granos; escarabajo dentado de los granos; gorgojillo dentado; gorgojo asserrado de los granos; gorgojo de torax aserrado
- French: cucujide dentelé des grains; silvain; ver dente des grains
- Portuguese: caruncho de Suriname
Local Common Names
- Germany: Getreide-Plattkaefer; Getreide-Schmalkaefer
- Israel: chipushit mschunent hachaze
- Italy: Silvano surinamense
- Japan: Nokogiri-kokunusuto
- Netherlands: Rijstkever
- Norway: sagtannet melbille
- Turkey: testereli bocek
- ORYZSU (Oryzaephilus surinamensis)
Taxonomic TreeTop of page
- Domain: Eukaryota
- Kingdom: Metazoa
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Subphylum: Uniramia
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Coleoptera
- Family: Silvanidae
- Genus: Oryzaephilus
- Species: Oryzaephilus surinamensis
Notes on Taxonomy and NomenclatureTop of page Although now placed in the family Silvanidae, these beetles were previously included in the Cucujidae. Only O. surinamensis (Linnaeus) and O. mercator (Fauvel) are of any importance as pests in this small family of beetles although other species such as Ahasverus advena (Waltl) and Cathartus quadricollis (Guerin) may be common in the humid tropics. Descriptions of several Oryzaephilus species found in stored products are given in Halstead (1980). For identification of the genus and the more common storage species, O. mercator and O. surinamensis, refer to the keys of Haines (1991) or Gorham (1991).
DescriptionTop of page Larva
The larvae of O. surinamensis and O. mercator are white, elongate, somewhat flattened and about 4-5 mm long when fully grown; they do not have urogomphi.
Adults of O. surinamensis and O. mercator are slender, parallel-sided, dark-brown beetles, 2.5-3.5 mm long. The antennae are relatively short and weakly clubbed, and the prothorax has six distinctive tooth-like projections along each side.
DistributionTop of page O. surinamensis is cosmopolitan; Oryzaephilus mercator is mostly found in warmer, temperate and tropical regions.
Distribution TableTop of page
The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.
Habitat ListTop of page
Hosts/Species AffectedTop of page O. surinamensis is a common secondary pest of cereals and cereal products; O. mercator is more common on oilseeds, though it is also sometimes found on cereals. Both species may be found on copra, spices, nuts and dried fruit. O. surinamensis is prevalent on white milled rice; O. mercator is common on brown rice and rice bran.
Host Plants and Other Plants AffectedTop of page
|Arachis hypogaea (groundnut)||Fabaceae||Other|
|Avena sativa (oats)||Poaceae||Main|
|Azadirachta indica (neem tree)||Meliaceae||Other|
|Ceratonia siliqua (locust bean)||Fabaceae||Other|
|Cocos nucifera (coconut)||Arecaceae||Other|
|Helianthus annuus (sunflower)||Asteraceae||Other|
|Hordeum vulgare (barley)||Poaceae||Main|
|Myristica fragrans (nutmeg)||Myristicaceae||Main|
|Oryza sativa (rice)||Poaceae||Main|
|Panicum miliaceum (millet)||Poaceae||Main|
|Phoenix dactylifera (date-palm)||Arecaceae||Other|
|Secale cereale (rye)||Poaceae||Other|
|Sorghum bicolor (sorghum)||Poaceae||Main|
|stored products (dried stored products)||Main|
|Triticum aestivum (wheat)||Poaceae||Main|
|Vicia faba (faba bean)||Fabaceae||Other|
|Zea mays (maize)||Poaceae||Main|
Growth StagesTop of page Post-harvest
SymptomsTop of page Adult beetles of O. surinamensis and O. mercator can be seen moving rapidly over stored food. The immature stages are inconspicuous.
List of Symptoms/SignsTop of page
|Seeds / external feeding|
Biology and EcologyTop of page Oryzaephilus spp. are typical secondary pests, attacking previously damaged or broken kernels to feed, especially on the germ. The larvae also attack the germ in whole cereal grains, thereby altering the nutritional content and reducing the percentage germination. Adults and larvae are able to enter small cracks, so they can often attack packaged food or nuts in shell. On copra, the larvae tend to feed close beneath the outer skin. The attack of Oryzaephilus spp. is facilitated by the broken kernels that result from handling procedures or the feeding activity of primary pests. Maize kernels damaged by the primary pest Sitotroga cereallella are a more suitable medium for development than mechanically damaged kernels (Weston and Rattlingourd, 2000). Likewise, wheat grain previously infested by the secondary pests Tribolium castaneum or Tribolium confusum (Trematerra et al., 2000) are more attractive than mechanically split kernels.
The life history of O. surinamensis and O. mercator has been described by Howe (1956). Eggs are laid loosely on foodstuffs at a peak rate of 6-10 per day in O. surinamensis, and 3 per day in O. mercator. Up to 375 eggs are laid by an O. surinamensis female and up to 200 by an O. mercator female. The larvae feed within the mass of produce. The larvae moult 2-4 times depending on conditions. On a diet of wheatfeed, the life cycle of Oryzaephilus spp. varies from about 20 days to more than 80 days at temperatures of 17.5-37.5°C and 10-90% RH. Optimum conditions for development are 30-35°C and 70-90% RH for O. surinamensis, and 30-33°C and 70% RH for O. mercator. O. surinamensis is more tolerant of extremes in temperature and humidity than O. mercator. For example, O. surinamensis can survive temperatures of 20-37°C at <10% RH, whereas O. mercator can only survive at 25-32.5°C at this humidity. Adult O. surinamensis have been reported to survive sub-zero temperatures for up to 4 days; under these and less extreme conditions (temperatures down to 5°C), O. mercator did not survive. In temperate areas, O. surinamensis can survive winters in unheated stores.
Adult Oryzaephilus spp. are winged but rarely fly. They tend to wander from the stored food into crevices, ducts and roofing spaces, from which they are difficult to eradicate; they can often be found beneath the bark of trees near to stores. Oryzaephilus spp. have not been recorded on grain in the field before harvest.
Natural enemiesTop of page
|Natural enemy||Type||Life stages||Specificity||References||Biological control in||Biological control on|
Notes on Natural EnemiesTop of page Oryzaephilus spp. are attacked by a wide range of organisms, including the protozoans Nosema oryzaephili, N. whitei, Mattesia oryzaephili and Helicosporidium parasihcum. Granulosis virus from the moth Plodia interpunctella has been shown to affect Oryzaephilus in the laboratory. The mite, Pyemotes tritici, can cause high mortality on all stages of O. mercator, especially on intact grain under experimental conditions. The hemipterans, Xylocoris cursitans and X. flavipes, have been reported as predators of Oryzaephilus spp.
Parasitic Hymenoptera of the family Bethylidae parasitize Oryzaephilus: the records include Cephalonomia meridionalis, C. tarsalis and Holepyris sylvanidis.
Pathway VectorsTop of page
|Land vehicles||Transported in national and international grain trade||Yes|
Plant TradeTop of page
|Plant parts liable to carry the pest in trade/transport||Pest stages||Borne internally||Borne externally||Visibility of pest or symptoms|
|Fruits (inc. pods)||adults; eggs; larvae; pupae||Yes||Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye|
|Roots||adults; eggs; larvae; pupae||Yes||Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye|
|True seeds (inc. grain)||adults; eggs; larvae; pupae||Yes||Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye|
|Plant parts not known to carry the pest in trade/transport|
|Growing medium accompanying plants|
|Stems (above ground)/Shoots/Trunks/Branches|
Impact SummaryTop of page
|Fisheries / aquaculture||None|
ImpactTop of page Oryzaephilus spp. are not associated with any substantial weight loss in stored food products; however, infestations by these pests can lead to substantial contamination with frass and dead bodies. Thus, quality deterioration is an important issue.
Detection and InspectionTop of page Pitfall traps are unsuitable for the detection of O. surinamensis and O. mercator as these insects are able to climb on clean glass. They do enter refuge traps, such as strips of corrugated cardboard, or bag traps containing a suitable food bait (Hodges et al., 1986). A recently devised grain probe that automatically counts pests falling into it offers a convenient means of monitoring the pest in grain bulks (Epsky and Shuman, 2001).
Prevention and ControlTop of page
Cultural Control and Sanitary Methods
Good store hygiene plays an important role in limiting infestation by Oryzaephilus spp. The removal of infested residues from the previous season's harvest is essential, as is general hygiene in stores such as ensuring that all spillages are removed and all cracks and crevices filled. Infestations may also be limited by the storage of good quality grains such as whole cereals with fewer broken grains and dockage, and milled rice with a high milling degree (at least 95%) and few broken grains.
Biological control has not been practised against Oryzaephilus spp. The hemipterans, Xylocoris cursitans and X. flavipes, have been used successfully in field trials for biological control of residual populations of O. surinamensis.
Grain may be protected by the admixture of insecticide. Oryzaephilus spp. are susceptible to all those insecticides normally used on stored food. Grain stocks may be fumigated with phosphine to eliminate an existing infestation but these treatments provide no protection against re-infestation. A variety of diatomaceous earths have been tested against Oryzaephilus surinamesis (Fields and Korunic, 2000; Arthur, 2001) and these offer potential for the control of these species even at grain moisture contents up to 17% (Cook and Armitage, 2000).
ReferencesTop of page
APPPC, 1987. Insect pests of economic significance affecting major crops of the countries in Asia and the Pacific region. Technical Document No. 135. Bangkok, Thailand: Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific region (RAPA).
Arthur FH, 2001. Immediate and delayed mortality of Oryzaephilus surinamensis (L.) exposed on wheat treated with diatomaceous earth: effects of temperature, relative humidity, and exposure interval. Journal of Stored Products Research, 37(1):13-21; 17 ref.
AVA, 2001. Diagnostic records of the Plant Health Diagnostic Services, Plant Health Centre, Agri-food & Veterinary Authority, Singapore.
Buchanan GA; McDonald G; Evans PWC, 1984. Control of Drosophila spp., Carpophilus spp. and Ephestia figulilella (Gregson) in sultana grapes grown for dried fruit. Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture and Animal Husbandry, 24(126):440-446.
Caliboso MF; Sayaboc PD; Amoranto MR, 1985. Pest problems and the use of pesticides in grain storage in the Philippines. ACIAR Proceedings Series, Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, No. 14:17-29
Champ BR; Dyte CE, 1976. Report of the FAO global survey of pesticide susceptibility of stored grain pests. FAO Plant Production and Protection Series No. 5. Rome, Italy: Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.
Collins PJ; Lambkin TM; Bridgeman BW; Pulvirenti C, 1993. Resistance to grain-protectant insecticides in coleopterous pests of stored cereals in Queensland, Australia. Journal of Economic Entomology, 86(2):239-245
Cook DA; Armitage DM, 2000. Efficacy of a diatomaceous earth against mite and insect populations in small bins of wheat under conditions of low temperature and high humidity. Pest Management Science, 56(7):591-596; 32 ref.
Fields P; Korunic Z, 2000. The effects of grain moisture content and temperature on the efficacy of diatomaceous earths from different geographical locations against stored-product beetles. Journal of Stored Products Research, 36(1):1-13.
Gredilha R; Saavedra PR; Guerim L; Lima AFde; Serra-Freire NM, 2005. Occurrence of Oryzaephilus surinamensis Linnaeus, 1758 (Coleoptera:Cucujidae) and Necrobia rufipes De Geer, 1775 (Coleoptera:Cleridae) infesting pet food. (Ocorrência de Oryzaephilus surinamensis Linnaeus, 1758 (Coleoptera: Cucujidae) e Necrobia rufipes De Geer, 1775 (Coleoptera:Cleridae) infestando rações de animais domésticos.) Entomología y Vectores, 12(1):95-103.
Hallas T; Mourier H; Winding O, 1977. Seasonal variation and trends for some indoor insects in Denmark. (Arstidsvariationer og tendenser for nogle indendoers insekter i Danmark.) Entomologiske Meddelelser, 45(2):77-88.
Howe RW, 1956. The biology of the two common storage species of Oryzaephilus (Coleoptera, Cucujidae). Annals of Applied Biology, 44(2):341-355.
Machado EHL; Alves LC; Faustino MAG; Dezotti CH, 2008. Frequency of stored-insect products in pet food traded in the City of Recife-PE. (Freqüência de insetos-praga em alimento industrializado para cães comercializado na cidade de Recife-PE.) Medicina Veterinária (Brasil), 2(1):10-16. http://www.dmv.ufrpe.br/revista
Mills KA, 1983. Resistance to the fumigant hydrogen phosphide in some stored-product species associated with repeated inadequate treatments. Mitteilungen der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Allgemeine und Angewandte Entomologie, 4(1/3):98-101.
Olson AR; Bryce JR; Lara JR; Madenjian JJ; Potter RW; Reynolds GM; Zimmerman ML, 1987. Survey of stored-product and other economic pests in import warehouses in Los Angeles. Journal of Economic Entomology, 80(2):455-459
Pacavira R; Mata O; Manuel A; Pereira AP; Mexia A, 2006. Detection of stored products pests by pheromone traps in seven warehouses in Luanda/Angola. In: Proceedings of the 9th International Working Conference on Stored-Product Protection, ABRAPOS, Passo Fundo, RS, Brazil, 15-18 October 2006 [ed. by Lorini, I.\Bacaltchuk, B.\Beckel, H.\Deckers, D.\Sundfeld, E.\Santos, J. P. dos\Biagi, J. D.\Celaro, J. C.\Faroni, L. R. D.\Bortolini, L. de O. F.\Sartori, M. R.\Elias, M. C.\Guedes, R. N. C.\Fonseca, R. G. da\Scussel, V. M.]. Passo Fundo, Brazil: Brazilian Post-Harvest Association (ABRAPOS), 1157-1165. http://bru.gmprc.ksu.edu/proj/iwcspp/pdf/9/6335.pdf
Reed C; Arthur FH; Trigo-Stockli D, 1998. Conditioning practices and their effects on infestation and quality of corn [maize] stored on Kansas farms. Applied Engineering in Agriculture, 14(6):623-630.
Sandvol L; Halderson J; Finnegan B; Wilson J; Whitmore J; Sharp W; Bechinski E; 1984, recd. 1986. Demonstration of electronic monitoring and management of stored grain. In: Proceedings of the Third International Working Conference on Stored-Product Entomology. October 23- 28, 1983, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas USA Manhattan, Kansas, USA: Kansas State University, 669-671.
Silva PHSda, 2001. Insects associated with babaçu (Orbignya spp.) in the state of Piauí. (Insetos associados ao babaçu (Orbignya spp.) no Estado do Piauí.) Documentos - Embrapa Meio-Norte, No.63:23 pp.
Subramanyam B; Harein PK, 1990. Status of malathion and pirimiphos-methyl resistance in adults of red flour beetle and sawtoothed grain beetle infesting farm-stored corn in Minnesota. Journal of Agricultural Entomology, 7(2):127-136.
Trematerra P; Sciarreta A; Tamasi E, 2000. Behavioural responses of Oryzaephilus surinamensis, Tribolium castaneum and Tribolium confusum to naturally and artificially damaged durum wheat kernels. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 94(2):195-200; 23 ref.
Trematerra P; Sciarretta A, 2004. Spatial distribution of some beetles infesting a feed mill with spatio-temporal dynamics of Oryzaephilus surinamensis, Tribolium castaneum and Tribolium confusum. Journal of Stored Products Research, 40(4):363-377. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T8Y-48DXN7D-4&_user=3796239&_handle=V-WA-A-W-E-MsSAYWW-UUW-U-AAWBZZDYUY-AAWAWVYZUY-WAEUVWZYA-E-U&_fmt=summary&_coverDate=12%2F31%2F2004&_rdoc=2&_orig=browse&_srch=%23toc%235099%232004%23999599995%23493136!&_cdi=5099&view=c&_acct=C000000593&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=3796239&md5=158860953bc5cce976fbea207b13ddf7
Wallbank BE, 1996. Resistance to organophosphorus grain protectants in Oryzaephilus surinamensis (L.) (Coleoptera: Silvanidae) from off-farm grain storages in New South Wales. Australian Journal of Entomology, 35(3):193-195.
Waterhouse DF, 1993. The Major Arthropod Pests and Weeds of Agriculture in Southeast Asia. ACIAR Monograph No. 21. Canberra, Australia: Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, 141 pp.
Weston PA; Rattlingourd PL, 2000. Progeny production by Tribolium castaneum (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) and Oryzaephilus surinamensis (Coleoptera: Silvanidae) on maize previously infested by Sitotroga cerealella (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae). Journal of Economic Entomology, 93(2):533-536; 18 ref.
Distribution MapsTop of page
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