Psocids (Psocoptera), or booklice, are very common in Singapore, due to our humidity and tropical weather. These bugs thrives in humid conditions. They likely came in through construction materials while the house was being built, and simply stayed to breed. They can feed on microscopic mold that is growing in the humid areas they are in. However they do not bite, sting, or bother people or pets. Also, “booklice” is actually an inappropriate name for these bugs, because they do not feed on books, but they feed on starch-based items like: book bindings, grains, wallpaper glue and fungi that can at times be found in old books.
They have often been mistaken for Termites or “white ants”, but on closer examination, booklice have more prominent eyes and a distinct neck. They are treated as a nuisance pest that do not transmit diseases.
The presence of psocids is merely a nuisance because the pests do not harm humans or pets and do not bite. Large populations usually indicate an underlying mold or moisture problem. When homeowners spot them near stored food in pantries, the pests are an indicator of food spoilage. If items are infested by psocids, throw the items away and take steps to reduce the humidity and moisture in and around other, non-infested foods.
You will find tiny love booklice crawling around your cupboards, walls, books, and upholstered furniture
Tiny eggs of about 50-60, laid either singly or in clusters usually whiteish green or brown.
The females lay eggs in the spring and summer. The immature insects are called nymphs. They look like the adults but have no wings.
Psocids have chewing mouthparts, but they do not bite people or pets. When they invade kitchens, they can contaminate open packages of food.
The ULV misting is a two-step treatment that emits fine water-based insecticide particles that penetrate cracks and crevices, walls, books, furnitures. After spraying, the mist is left to diffuse throughout the whole room for about 4 hours killing every book lice.
There are indeed many DIY solutions out there that can be found online. However, unlike a professional, one might not be able to detect the root cause of the booklice infestation, and moreover, might not have an effective solution to ensure that infestation does not happen again. Lastly, every premise is unique, and at times there might not be a one-sized fit all approach to your pest issue.
Booklice feed on mold, fungi, or any remnants found on decaying organic materials. They are commonly found in moist and warm places; in areas with poor ventilation.
Booklice sizes really depend on the type of species. Their sizes range from 1 to 7mm.
Booklice do not chew on human or animal flesh, thus they will not bite your occupants. The main issue with booklice is that they can cause disruption to your assets and can potentially cause food contamination. They are mainly a nuisance and if found on your leftover food, it could indicate that your food is old and spoilt.
There are not many obvious telltale signs, and the main way to detect an infestation is the sightings of these insects on the surfaces of your items or old food.
If you manage to find them, you should start by checking areas that often left untouched, such as: your kitchen sink, plumbing areas, gutters, and walls. Check if your grout is missing, and if the areas that are getting mouldy have those booklice lying around. Afterward, start by removing any infected items, and proceed to add in dehumidifiers; aimed at reducing moisture. Start by using bleach to kill the mold and mildew growing in your areas, proceed to wipe off and booklice lying around.