Look out moths
I always work better from a check list, and this gives me the ammo to start gunning for pantry moths.
Thanks for giving me a fighting chance
No one likes to suffer through a moth infestation, but the only way to get rid of moths involves some simple steps that may need to be repeated several times. Often homeowners debate how to kill moths between using moth killing chemicals or moth traps. Because moths are often found near food, we never recommend using pesticides, poisons or other chemical for moth extermination projects. The gold standard for eliminating a moth infestation is pantry moth traps because the moth traps contain a female moth pheromone that will attract and capture male moths, reducing the next wave of moth larvae that will grow into adults. Let’s look at the steps for controlling a moth infestation
Moth Extermination with Moth Traps
Just follow these steps to resolve any size moth infestation.
1. Throw out moth infested foods
Empty your cupboard; All of it! Take out every box and can, Open foods that have been in the cupboard for a long time ( like corn meal, corn starch or oatmeal). When you see any clumping of the grain or powders, you can bet that pantry bugs: moth eggs, or moth larvae are living in the food, and using it as an all-you-can-eat buffet. Throw it out.
Even though it may cost a few dollars, throw out any contaminated foods including the packages. No arguments, if you try to empty out part of the container you will end up leaving moth larvae and eggs that you can’t see and your moth problem will never end.
Dedicate a plastic garbage bag for the job and load it up. Close the bag when you are not filling it. You don’t want the moths to escape.
2. Clean to remove all moth larvae webbing
Cleaning the moth larvae and its webbing wipes out a good portion of the next wave of pantry moths.
At this point your cupboard should be empty. Remove all shelf liner and if shelves are removable take them out too.
Clean the inside of the cupboard with any home cleaner, or just water an vinegar. The goal of cleaning is not to kill the larvae, it is just to remove them. Pay close attention to the inside trim of the pantry, underside of shelf supports and even the shelf adjustment peg holes. Clean EVERY inch of the cupboard, also make sure there are no Moth Larvae on the ceiling.
Now restock the pantry, making sure to wipe down every edge of both ends of every can you put back into the cupboard. If you put moth larvae back in the cupboard you are not getting rid of all the moths.
3. Use Pantry Moth Traps to catch Adult moths
At this point, the center of the moth infestation should be cleaned removing moth eggs, moth larvae, moth pupa and many adult moths. The remaining effort is to capture adult moths, to prevent them from reproducing an creating the next wave of pantry moths. We recommend using moth pheromone traps that are effective to capture adult male moths that ready to mate.
Don’t be discouraged when you see moths flying past the traps! It could be female moths, who won’t be attracted to the moth trap or it could be young adult moths who are not ready to mate. If you give the traps a couple weeks (most moth traps will remain active for 12 weeks) it will attract the moths that are the most dangerous, the moths that want to mate and create the next wave of infestation.
4. Repeat Until the moth infestation ends
Yes, repeat the process.
Most moth infestation require multiple cycles of moth control. The reason is simple, if moth traps catch half the adult male moths, there are still another half that can find females and mate. So after the first wave your moth infestation will be down to 50%, after the second wave you are down to 25%, and the third wave reduces the infestation to 12%. By the time the infestation is down to this small size, the odds that a male moth can physically find a female to reproduce with are even lower. At this point your moth infestation will be under control.
Of course, the lower the initial infestation size, the faster you will have things under control. This is why many homeowners keep at least 1 pantry moth trap out at all times. This approach used the sentinel moth trap to let you know when an infestation is imminent. When the sentinel moth trap has a few moths in it, jump to action, repeat this process and you can get rid of moths before they have a chance to mount another home invasion!