Indian Meal moths might not be the flying creatures of scary movie prophecy, but the damage their larvae can cause in your home is pretty frightening. Indian Meal moths aren't the moths who eat holes in your favorite sweaters while you're wearing shorts and tanktops all summer to stay cool in the sun. They can be found in your pantry, eating your dry goods! These winged insects feed on grains and sugars. This means cereals, crackers, and other crunchy snacks, like your pet's food, are their targets. They also love flour and candy, and with Halloween right around the corner, now is a good time to shore up your defenses against these pests. Because no one wants to share the mini Snickers, right?
In order to protect yourself against Indian Meal moths, it's important to know exactly what you're looking for. Here's a short video of Breda Pest Management founder, Rodger Breda, talking to 11Alive's Atl & Co about Indian Meal moths. Adult Indian Meal moths have a wingspan of about 3/4 of an inch and the bottom two-thirds of their wings are covered in copper-colored scales. Their adult lifespan is about two weeks. In that two weeks, female Indian Meal moths can lay between 20 and 350 eggs. Adult meal moths aren't dangerous; it's their larvae which cause the damage to your dry goods. Indian Meal moth larvae are small and powerful. Once they hatch from their eggs, the larvae begin crawling to look for food.
While the easy targets are open boxes of food in your pantry, these determined larvae have been known to chew through unopened packages of food as well. Once inside, they crawl around gorging themselves on your groceries and leaving behind a silken webbing not unlike a cobweb. To contain these insects, the first line of defense is to clean out your pantry. A good purge of old groceries will go a long way toward stopping the infestation. Be sure to vacuum up any old crumbs left in the pantry and kitchen, too.
Secondly, move your dry goods from their original packaging into airtight glass or plastic containers. Many Indian Meal moth infestations begin with larvae carried into the home from the grocery store. Get rid of the packaging and you will help eliminate the problem. Regular pest control is crucial to keeping Indian Meal moths (and other insects) at bay. Because they spin their cocoons in hard to see places, it's imperative that the experts are called in to treat your home for insects.
The team at Breda Pest Management will apply their treatment to the exact areas Indian Meal moths target when cycling through their life stages: all of the cracks and crevices where Indian Meal moths love to hide. Through 10/31, you can save $10 off your initial pest control service with one of Breda Pest Management's affordable quarterly service contracts. Give them a call to set up your appointment today. Only the sun outshines their service!