Pest Guides

Powder Post Beetle

Lyctus brunneus


Powder Post Beetle
  • Adults are 4–7mm in length.
  • They are red brown, narrow and somewhat flattened.
  • The larvae are creamy white and measure 6mm when fully developed.


  • Whitish, long and cylindrical eggs are laid by the female into the wide pores of hardwoods. She lays between 30 and 50 eggs, which hatch in one or two weeks. They are laid only if the starch content of the wood is high enough for the larvae to feed.
  • The larvae pupate for between two and four weeks near the surface. The adult emerges by biting its way out between May and September and throughout the year in heated buildings.
  • The whole life cycle is normally less than one year.


  • Of the four distinct life stages, the larvae do the most damage to wood. Large quantities of adults are found on infested timber and window sills when they emerge.
  • They are primarily pests of timber yards, but also cause considerable damage to furniture, sports equipment, wood block floors and joinery made of wide pored hardwoods.

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