Pest Control

Are Moths Pests ? ( The Answer May Surprise You )

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Are moths pests? Yes they are. Moths are considered a serious pest despite the fact that  they do not affect your health in a negative way like many pests do. Moth larvae could damage the carpets, furniture and clothing as they are made out of natural fabrics like wool and silk. 

 Unfortunately, you cannot fix those despite what you do. It could even cost you a loss of your precious and expensive possessions. 

Are Moths Pests

You may lose your precious teddy bears, wedding dress etc due to these nasty creatures. Hence, it would be always best to get rid of them at the very moment you spot them. To briefly explain what moths look like, they would look dramatic in their appearances and in sizes depending on their species. 

There could be massive moths as well as tiny moths. They would carry two pairs of wings and you could spot them being covered with scales. They would further consist of a coiled proboscis and larger compound eyes. There are certain moth types which you could spot in metallic colors. 

On the other hand, there are certain moth types which you could spot in brown or in gray. If we consider the moths who infest indoor space would be smaller than 2 cm wingspan and shades of gray, brown or reddish brown. 

What do moths eat?

Moths would eat natural fibers which they can find in clothes, carpets , drapes and in bedding. They will fulfill their dietary  requirements from the wool, silk, cotton and from any other natural fiber they can gain. In case they cannot find clothing fibers, they would end up eating pet fur or chomp so that they can get the natural fibers underneath. They would get protein keratin out of these fibers.

Furthermore, adult moths will consume various liquids so that they can balance the water level in their bodies. In fact, they can survive with little food. They will get the liquid from flower nectar, decaying  fruits, honeydew etc. Besides, they can absorb the required nutrients from bird droppings and from animal dung as well. 

On the other hand, the moth caterpillars require more energy, and they can eat whatever they come across. Literally, they can consume the plant leaves they find in the wild. So, to sum up the things that moths eat, they would be liquid from flower nectar, decaying fruit, bird droppings, honeydew, animal dung, wool, silk, cotton pet fur etc.

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How long moth lives

Moths’ lifespan would be around 1-6 months. However, it could vary depending on the moth  species though. Moth life cycle would consist of egg stage, larva stage and the grown-up stage. The female moth can lay about 50 eggs within a short period like in two weeks. 

Further chances are that they may lay about hundreds of eggs as well. Next would be the larvae and pupae stage. After about one or two weeks after the eggs laying, you could spot the larvae and caterpillars  emerging from the eggs. 

They could fulfill their necessary nutrients from consuming the previous shells. Final stage would be the grown moth’s stage.

Are Moths Pests

Do moth’s poop?

The adult moths do not usually get involved with urinating and with defecating. It is in fact the larvae stage of the moths that eats and defecates. They would keep eating and defecating. When they keep consuming in the same place, you can hear them defecating. Fuhrer, when they infest a forest , you could hear them defecating like rain.

What causes moths in the house

It is important to know on their entry points to learn on the causes for the moths’ infestations in your house. Moths can enter your home through torn screens, cracks in windows and in door frames. If you spot a single moth, chances are that you would have opened a door or window which allowed them to come into your space. 

Besides, they may also arrive in your home by hiding in someone’s coat also. Moreover, they may also come through furniture, packing and in containers also. Moths can simply hide in these spots. To learn on this further , following are factors which could attract the moths to invade your space. 

Light

Moths are attractive towards light. This is something which is common among the other bugs too. They would prefer to occupy the warm brightly lit places. Consider that there are cracks in your windows, and they are half closed, then it would be quite attractive towards the moths, and they would end up invading your space. 

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Light would be more like a source of attraction for them. Having said that there are other factors also which attract the moths into your home. Moreover, keep in mind that the moths which go after light are not harmful for you and you can simply get rid of them as well.

Pantry food

There are some types of moths which are quite attractive towards dry stored goods. Moths are an interesting set of creatures as they can creep into any corner of your home and in your kitchen. Hence it is very important that you always keep the kitchen clean. 

Furthermore, moths can enter your home though packaging and in containers as well. Literally moths are fond of occupying the boxes and chances are that you may find the moths eggs and larvae in these items particularly if you have brought them from infected warehouses.

Cloth moths

Moths can enter your home by clothing. There are two moths’ types which you can find, and they are pantry moths and cloth moths. The pantry moths would prefer to consume the dried food etc. Cloth moths can enter your home while hiding in the clothing.

Why are small moths flying around the house?

You could spot the small moths flying around your home specially during early winter. Having said that you could spot them in your home at any time of the year also. During winter, you can commonly spot them though.

Are moths dangerous?

To briefly answer the question, moths are not dangerous. However, they can cause discomfort among humans. Moths would not bite you or cause direct harm. In fact,  it would result in rashes and in allergies.

Are Moths Pests

How to get rid of moths

If we elaborate further on this subject, you can apply several methods to get rid of the moths. First you can reduce the larvae by doing the following steps.

Clean your house

Cleanliness is a must when you try to get rid of them.  To do that you need to vacuum the woolen carpets completely. Ensure that you clean under the carpets and behind the furniture. Further you need to wash the vulnerable fabrics as well. 

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Clean the furniture thoroughly. To clean them, you can use soap and vinegar solution. You can apply this solution in the wardrobes, drawers as well. Do a thorough cleansing on the cracks. If there are any untouched areas, there will be a high probability for them to nest there.

Ensure that you wash everything including your old luggage cases and bags which have been unused for so long. You would commonly find the larvae in those places. 

Further if you collected the larvae in your vacuum, you would need to empty them from your vacuum as well. Hence collect all the larvae and dispose of them to the bin. Besides, it will have more space to collect more debris.

Set up traps

In addition to that, you can set up moth traps as well. To do that, you can make a combination of flypaper and fish oil and set it up on the affected place. Simply you can hang it anywhere you like. Further consider swapping your clothes hangers for cedar ones. Moths simply hate this smell, and it will stop them from invading your clothes.

Consider placing small bags with scented ingredients. You may consider placing thyme, rosemary bay leaves and lavender etc. Besides all these, you may use essential oil also. This would  be more like a room freshener and a preventative measure also.

Proper air circulation

Ensure that there is proper air circulation in your home. The exposure for excess sunlight and good aeration is not something  that moths prefer. Hence, it would make it less attractive for the moths, and it would make it difficult for them to make nests too. Finally, you need to vacuum your home properly. 

Ensure that you get rid of the larvae so that the infestation would not spread further. If you still find it difficult to get rid of them, you may get in contact with a pest control service to overcome this menace. They will help you to eliminate the moth menace from your house.

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Conclusion

Hope this article gives you a thorough knowledge on the moths, the things they eat and on the modes of getting rid of them. 

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I'm Dr. Chamika and I'm a Researcher in Water quality, Aquatic organisms, and Environmental chemistry. Our highly qualified team is trying to educate you in various aspects of the day to day life in many ways. Their mission is to help others to enjoy their life to the fullest.