Indian Meal Moth
Appearance: Indian Meal moths are approximately ½” in length, and they are dark in color. The top of their wings may appear to be a red/copper color.
Location and Behavior Patterns: This type of moth can be found in all aspects of the food industry. From the silos on the farms that hold the grain, to the food processing plants, to the grocery store shelves, and into your home, the Indian Meal moth can be found anywhere along the way. In addition to entering your home through food items, they can also find their way indoors through small cracks around your building materials.
Once inside a dried food item, the female moth will lay her eggs. Those larvae will hatch and will feed on the surrounding dried food items. They will spin a web around the food that they have eaten, which is a clear sign that you have Indian Meal moths in your food or in your grain item. They can also be found in other things that they can feed upon, such as; in bird food, pet food, potpourri, spices, or on decorative wreaths.
Treatment: Preventative measures are the best way to prevent the Indian Meal moth from contaminating the foods that you have in your home. Place grains, cereals, nuts, bird food, pet food, and other similar items in plastic storage containers, that have a tight seal on them. If an infestation occurs, then cleaning the area thoroughly, and discarding any affected food item, is an important step for any property owner.
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