No one wants moths in their home. Although moths are enjoyable to watch when they are outdoors fluttering around a light. When they come inside, they are trespassing on us in our homes and we need Moth Removal.
Moths themselves are not a huge problem, but their larvae love to eat while they grow. If you end up with moths in your home, you may find evidence of their presence in your closets and cupboards. Moth larvae love to eat through fabrics and dry goods and they can cause a lot of damage.
Moth removal may seem overwhelming, but it’s actually pretty easy. There are a wide variety of effective options available to you; if one doesn’t work the first time, you can always try another, or apply several strategies together in a united front against these household pests.
Moths: Pesky But Fascinating
Moths themselves are harmless to humans. Most people don’t experience any negative health effects from their presence; the concern, when it comes to moths, is property damage, not health issues.
They are fascinating creatures.
There are over 160,000 known species of moths in the world, but only a few of them are interested in getting inside your home.
Moths are part of the Lepidoptera order of insects along with butterflies, but moths outnumber butterflies by a nine to one ratio worldwide. Most are nocturnal, but many are active during the day. Some moths that you have seen in nature you may have assumed were butterflies because moths come in all colors, shapes, and sizes.
Like butterflies and some other insects, many moths are pollinators. They collect pollen on their legs and carry them from flower to flower, helping the flowers to bloom.
Some moths don’t eat in their adult form, which is why they eat so heartily during the larval stage. They only live for a few days as adults, so their main focus is mating for reproduction. However, moths are food for countless animals including birds, bats, frogs, lizards, and small mammals; they are rich in protein and help these animals to thrive.
If you want to observe moths outdoors, you can attract them with a strong light source in the evenings and nights. To see them during the day, you can attract them with sweet treats like fruit, molasses, and beer.
Moths and Destruction
The only life stage in which moths are dangerous to your property is in their larval stage. They begin as eggs, and when the eggs hatch they are larva. Eventually, they enter a transformation, pupae stage before growing wings and beginning their flight-based adult stage.
Larvae love to eat. The entire purpose of their larval stage is to eat and grow before beginning their transformation to a recognizable moth. During this period, their mouths close sideways and are strong. They can easily gnaw through even tough fibers like leather and upholstery.
The reason moth larvae eat fabrics is because they contain keratin. This substance is tasty to them and is found in natural fibers like silk, wool, cotton, and fur. It also can be found in human sweat, which can also attract moth larvae to your clothing.
Types of Moths in Your Home
There are 11,000 different species of moths in the United States alone, but there are only two that are commonly found in homes.
The clothes moth loves to eat your clothes. If you find an article of clothing with a hole in it or some dark covered stains, chances are a moth has already begun working on it.
Pantry moths prefer the food in your cabinets. They can quickly infest a pantry or cabinet if you don’t keep your food storage areas clean. Not only will they eat your food, but they will also spread germs and droppings throughout your cabinets in their journey.
Although moths are not harmful to most people, individuals who suffer from asthma may experience difficulty breathing due to the shedding of tiny hairs during the larval stage. Even if you don’t see any other signs of moth larvae in your home, breathing issues for asthmatics can indicate their presence.
The Art of Moth Removal
There are many things you can do to get those pesky moths out of your home. Moth removal can seem like a challenge, but it can be overcome. All of the following suggestions are natural and won’t require you to use harsh chemicals in your home.
The reason so many people have closets made of cedar is to combat moth infestations. Cedar closets aren’t cheap, but they look great and smell great too. Moths are repelled by the pheromones in cedar, so this method of moth control is very effective.
If you can’t afford to redo your closets or simply don’t want to, you can spread the smell of cedar in a more budget-friendly way. Cedar oil, diluted with water, can be sprayed in your closet and on your clothes to drive moths away instead.
2. Sticky Traps
You can trap moth larvae with sticky traps. These traps are baited with moth pheromones to attract moths to their sticky surface. Once they climb onto them, they get stuck. Since they can’t break free, they die.
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There are many herbs that moths don’t like; their scent literally drives moth larvae away. A few of these include lavender, bay leaves, cloves, rosemary, and thyme. You can collect and dry fresh versions of these plants and pack them into a small fabric bag to hang in your closet.
Another option is to use essential oils made from these herbs. As with the cedar oil, you can dilute these herbs in water and spray them on your clothes and around your closet. You should reapply on a regular basis for the best results.
It may sound like common sense, but one excellent way to fend off moth larvae is to keep your house very clean. Make sure that you clean and dust frequently and keep your home free of dust and dirt. Excess dirt can attract moths.
You should also make an effort to empty your vacuum cleaner contents on a regular basis and wash your dust cloths after dusting.
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If you find clothing that shows signs of moth larvae, one way to kill off the offenders is to subject your clothing to freezing temperatures. This is not difficult to do at home if you only have a few items of clothing with moth damage, but if you have many, you will not be able to fit them in all in your freezer.
In cold climates where the temperature drops below freezing at night, you might even consider putting your effected clothing outside overnight. This can kill moth larvae quickly and effectively.
You’ll need to keep your clothes at freezing temperatures for twenty-four hours for best results and ultimate success.
6. High-Heat Washing
Another way method for moth removal is to wash your clothes in hot water and then dry them with the dryer set at its highest heat setting. Just like cold temperatures can kill moth larvae, high temperatures can also be effective.
If you have clothes that cannot be washed and dried at high temperatures, you can wash them and then revert to the previous tip by putting your wet clothes in the freezer for a day.
Heat and cold both work well to kill both larvae and eggs. Killing the eggs will help to ward off future infestations as well. There’s nothing more frustrating than thinking you solved the problem but discovering a resurgence of the original problem when the new eggs hatch.
Moth larvae also dislike the scent of vinegar. Vinegar is an excellent cleaning agent in general, but it is especially useful when dealing with moth removal.
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Dilute the vinegar with water and spray and scrub any areas where you believe that moths are present. This will not only drive them away, but it will discourage them from returning in the future as well.
8. Pest Control
If you try all of the above methods and still find that you are experiencing a moth infestation in your home, it might be time to call a pest control company for assistance.
Sometimes, removal and prevention techniques just aren’t enough to do the job, but a pest control company has years of experience in removing insects from people’s homes, and they can get the job done for you.
Moth Removal Is Possible
No one wants moths in their home. If you have high-end clothing or furniture, moth larvae can do many thousands of dollars of damage in a very short time. The presence of moths in your cabinets can leave you afraid to open them or to eat any of the food that you purchased.
You need to get moths out of your home quickly before they begin to reproduce. A full-blown moth infestation is frustrating and upsetting, but moth removal is possible, and with perseverance and the right approach, moths can be defeated.