Fighting Off Meal Moths In
By Alex Daniels
Meal moths attack stored grain products or household foodstuff. Once established in food, insect populations can increase and infest vulnerable material throughout the home, apartment, or storage area. Some adult moths do fly into the home through open door or windows, but most are carried inside from outdoor storage or in packaged goods or groceries.
Everyone's home is vulnerable. However, those who do not store food properly have the greatest problems. Spilled or exposed foods attract the insects and increase the chance of infestation. Foods that are not tightly sealed, especially those maintained for long periods of time, are particularly susceptible to infestation.
Prevention and Control of Meal Moths
Sanitation is the primary method for avoiding problems with stored product pests with good practices. Some points to remember include:
* Spilling or leaving food exposed (as a common practice) attracts and harbors these pests. Avoid these practices and you will probably never have this problem.
* Cookie crumbs and bits of dried pet food may fall behind furniture or under appliances where children play or pets are fed. Toaster crumbs and crumbs from food preparation fall into cracks beside the stove or refrigerator. Stored grains, etc., may also fall behind storage drawers. Pull out appliances and drawers occasionally and thoroughly vacuum these out-of-the-way locations.
* Most cupboard pests can chew their way into cardboard boxes or plastic sacks. Place stored materials into tight-fitting containers, preferably of glass or other tough material. If an infestation should occur under these conditions, it probably will be limited to a single jar.
* Use a vacuum cleaner to remove debris form cracks and corners of storage areas. Also clean the nearby areas with very hot water and a strong detergent solution Allow to dry thoroughly.
* If you are not successful on your own than you should contact a reputable pest control operator (exterminator). The situation may be too far out of control at this point. The adults and the laying of eggs will just continue the problem.
Pest control will always be a problem in any living environment. As long as there is food to feed and eggs hatching out of the flour when stored too long, you will have a problem. Take control before it becomes greater than it is necessary.
About the Author: Alex consults for Metro Guardian, a retailer offering furniture protection products including commercial-grade leather cleaner and stain remover for furniture and clothing.