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Habitat

Many psocids are found in natural habitats such as animal nests etc. however some psocids are more closely associated with man and exist in warehouses, food manufacturing plants, granaries and museums in addition to domestic situations. In these areas they are known to infest food, plaster, leather woodwork or even books.

Biology

Eggs are generally laid within foodstuffs when psocids are found indoors. Incomplete metamorphosis life-cycle characterises the development of all psocids, with nymphal stages (of which there are usually 3 - 7) closely resembling the adult form. Full life cycle can proceed in 6 to 8 weeks under optimum conditions (20° - 25°c).

Pest Status

Rarely cause direct damage by feeding, psocids are relatively innocuous in small numbers. When found in larger numbers however, significant damage may result from their activities and presence. Psocids may spread micro organisms from one area to another and cause spoilage of stored food by this means.

Control

Psocids are almost always associated with damp conditions and indeed require damp environments to survive. Disposal of infested foodstuffs, and drying of infested areas may provide adequate means of control. In more problematic situations, residual insecticide use many be necessary.

 
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