Moths are not exactly what you would expect for your typical house pest. You are probably used to seeing moths fluttering outside near lights at night but not in your kitchen and around your pantry. You are probably here today because you are seeing moths around your food and you don’t know why. You may have even found their larvae crawling around in your cereal. That’s even worse! Regardless of why you are here today, we have your answers.
What Do Indian Meal Moths Look Like?
Fully grown, an Indian meal moth is ½” in length with a wingspan of roughly ⅝”. Typically, Indian meal moths are reddish-brown in color and have a copper sheen on the outer two-thirds of their wings, and grey on the inner third. Before reaching adulthood, Indian meal moths go through several stages of development, including egg, larva, and pupa. The latter stage is when they are most troublesome, and where you are most likely to encounter them.
How Indian Meal Moths Get into Homes
Indian meal moths can get into homes in one of two ways. They either fly in from outside and find their way into your pantry, or they lay their eggs inside dried food products that you buy and bring home with you. This typically happens at the food processing facility where it was packaged, or even at the supermarket where you shop. That being said, if you see any damage to a food package, don’t buy that item. Even just a small hole is enough for an Indian meal moth to slip inside.
Problems Indian Meal Moths Cause
The good thing is that Indian meal moths are not poisonous or venomous and are not capable of spreading any dangerous diseases to people. What they are, however, is disgusting. As we mentioned already, adult Indian meal moths are known to lay their eggs inside of boxes of dried food before you ever bring them home. This means by the time you get your cereal, rice, chips, etc home, there are already tiny larvae crawling around inside. And no one wants to pour themself a bowl of Cheerios only to find little wiggling bugs.
Once Indian meal moths get into your home, they can spread easily from box to box, laying more eggs, contaminating more food, and driving you more and more insane.
How You Can Deal With Indian Meal Moths
If you are seeing Indian meal moths around your home or their larvae inside boxes of dried foods, you are understandably eager to find a solution. What we recommend is throwing away any contaminated food items and storing new dried packaged food products inside airtight plastic, metal, or glass containers. This will hopefully eliminate any current problem, and safeguard you against any remaining meal moths from spreading.
A Quicker and Easier Way To Handle Meal Moths
If you do not have the time to repackage all your food or the money to buy several large Tupperware containers, we have an easier solution for you. Here at Pest & Termite Consultants, we deal with pantry pests on a weekly, if not daily basis. If your food is being contaminated by nasty moths and their young, let us help.
Give us a call today to speak with one of our friendly services representatives about your pest control options, or to schedule an appointment for your home. We are here to help you keep pests away.