Our world is full of different species of insects. We see them everyday and everywhere: on the walls of a house, on the earth, on every surface available to those crawling, running and flying little guys. And we can also find beetles on our beloved stogies, which is the saddest thing in the universe for an aficionado.
The scientific term for tobacco beetles is Lasioderma serricorne, and they are very well known among cigar makers and cigar amateurs. It's a great headache both for those who produce stogies and those who smoke them.
Don't get it wrong that the manufacturer does not put much effort in killing them before they are sold. There are different ways of liquidating these noisy little creatures, which are practiced by cigar manufacturers. But the most astonishing thing is that beetles wait for cigars to be totally treated and only after all these cost effective processes are over they attack! Therefore, in many cases we get them right away with our fine stogies.
That is why it is recommended to check your cigars immediately after you purchased them at your local cigar store, on the Internet or in any other place. Open the box with the stogies and control it for tiny brown bugs. If you did not find them, then you are the lucky guy and do not have to worry. But if you came across some minute holes in cigars or the insects themselves, take prompt actions, which are described below.
Take out all the cigars from the humidor, put them into a ziplock bag or in their own box and place into the freezer. These harmful beetles cannot stand the frost and are easily destroyed at low temperatures. Keep them for a couple of days (do not overdo, 3-4 days are enough) and then remove the bag to the fridge - to not harm the cigars, especially the wrapper. The freeze might cause stogies peeling. After taking these measures, you can place them into the humidor (at first, check every item once more).
Remember that if the infected cigars were sitting in your humidor, it should be cured too. Dust it thoroughly with a dry clean cloth and then repeat the procedure with a mixing of water and ammonia; this will kill remaining bugs and their larvae as they reproduce themselves in dust. Don't be afraid, ammonia does not leave any smell and is harmless for your stogies. Now, you can put the cigars back into their storage case.
And, finally, several things to remember and be aware of while having a deal with tobacco beetles:
- Do not buy cigars on Havana streets as usually these are counterfeits. Their manufacturers do not bother themselves with killing bugs in tobacco leaves.
- Throw any cigars with visible large holes in them - they are not good anymore.
- Keep the temperature and humidity levels in your humidor in a proper manner: if it approaches 80 degrees Fahrenheit and the same level of humidity, beetles larvae emerge and you have to fight with them anew.
- Be aware: larvae hatch even at a lower temperature-humidity level. The only thing to do is to check the condition of your humidor and stogies as frequent as possible.
- And one more thing: in the summer beetles can be even more active as the temperature in the room rises. Install a room conditioner to maintain a proper temperature level to avoid fighting with these small harmful creatures.