The 13th FUMIGANTS & PHEROMONES CONFERENCE

Mark your calendars for June 12-14, 2018

‘25 Years of Sharing Through Education’ Lubeck 1993, Bologna 1995, Chicago 1917, York, 1999, Copenhagen 2003, Thessaloniki 2005, Monterrey 2007, Bremen 2009, Indianapolis 2012, Krakow 2014, Adelaide 2015, Indianapolis 2018

F and P conference logo

“Pest Management Around the World”

Indianapolis, Indiana

The theme of the 13th Fumigants & Pheromones Conference is “Twenty-five Years of Sharing Through Education”. This conference will feature new and practical applications of pest management with two hands-on workshops with field demonstrations. Each speaker has been carefully selected to offer an international perspective on how
we protect our food, grain, structures, wood, and fiber from invasive pests. Throughout the past 25 years, this biennial conference has followed the guiding principal of “Sharing Through Education.” This 2018 version will be no different. Since our first international conference in Lubeck Germany in 1993 and many training conferences since 1978 (our very first training program here in Indianapolis) we have worked hard to improve our
skills to help improve stored product protection. Stored product protection is a unique niche. We use products which are less toxic and have less impact on the environment as well as methods which are more proactive and less reactive than out of control
pest issues. Twenty-five years ago, the thought of pheromones and non-pesticide applications was in its infancy. Today, the rush to develop and utilize proactive approaches is a sign that our industry has listened to the technology and our customers and offered them choice of options. Options that include insect growth regulators, genetic selection, fumigant scrubbers, mating disruption, pre-emptive application of low impact pesticides, scanners and cell phone applications of recording and communicating. Yet new invasions of pesticide resistance, and new pest insects and bacteria are appearing and commanding our attention with new research, new jobs, and continued training.

Registration
Programs for the conference will be mailed in the coming months. Registrations and details will be found in these programs and on Insects Limited’s website: http://www.InsectsLimited.com

Register: https://store.insectslimited.com/fumigantspheromones-conference-registration

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Bugs in the House… Come on in and stay awhile

Bugs in the House… Come on in and stay awhile

By: Pat Kelley, BCE – Insects Limited

Ziggy by Tom Wilson

Insects
Insects are known to be some of the best organisms in the world at finding and exploiting niche environments. We find insects living in nearly every setting on the surface of the earth. There are insects that live in ice, snow, deserts, jungles, swamps,
forests, prairies, mountains, valleys and everything in between. Knowing their affinity to find suitable homes anywhere and everywhere, it is not unusual that our own homes can
become sanctuaries for many insect species. Let’s take a tour of a typical house and see who we might be inviting in.

Pat Article - bugs in home

Pat Article - bugs in home 2

Outdoor Landscaping
As we walk up towards our house from the outside, the lush trees, flowers and other plants that decorate the outside of the home are a food source to a wide variety of insects that feed on leaves, wood and pollen. The tree mulch around the base of the house provides food, moisture and shelter for termites, ants and fungus moth insects as well as non-insect critters such as springtails, millipedes, centipedes and sow bugs. Our pet dog or cat that is sitting on the front porch is a host to fleas and ticks. When day turns to night and we leave the light on located next to the front door, we will be attracting hundreds of species of night flying insects and the spiders that feed on them.

Pat Article - bugs in home 3

Family Room
As a family sits around together each evening enjoying a show on the television, odorous house ants and other ant species are busy beneath the sofa picking up our food scraps that we have dropped after we were munching on popcorn or other snacks. In the bay
window in this room, a colony of carpenter ants is taking advantage of an old leak that has caused “wood rot” in the window frame. These large black ants have begun to excavate a nest there.

Bedrooms
“Sleep tight and don’t let the bedbugs bite” isn’t just a cute phase in our bedroom in this house. Bedbugs that live behind the headboard and along the sides of the mattress as well as mosquitoes that fly in our open windows at night are after us for a blood donation during the quiet of the night.

Closets
The wool sweaters, fur coats, feather-filled comforters and felt lined jackets that we store in our bedroom and/or front hall closets are a windfall in edible food for clothes moths and carpet beetles alike.

Below is an informative video about clothes moths in closets:

Bathrooms
When it comes time to use the bathroom, we won’t be alone. A silverfish is unsuccessfully trying to run up the side of the empty bathtub after it accidentally fell
in. It has lived its entire life in the moist wall void adjacent to the tub. Small moth flies (aka: drain flies) are popping out from the rarely used drain in the sink.

Basement
Basements in our neighborhood tend to be a little damp. This is the perfect environment for smoky brown cockroaches. A floor drain in the basement leads directly into the city sewer and a multitude of American cockroaches waiting for a way to come inside. Cellar spiders and wolf spiders have made a good living here along with the centipedes who eat the plethora of insects that have made their way into the basement.

Attic
Just because the attic is high above the ground doesn’t mean that there isn’t a lot of activity there. A broken screen on an attic vent has allowed an English sparrow
to make a nest inside. Carpet beetles are doing quite well living on the dropped feathers in the nest. Cluster flies and Asian Lady beetles have accumulated in the attic space at numbers in the thousands as they look for a place to spend the winter. The same vent that allowed the bird to enter has proven to be a perfect entry point for umbrella wasps to make a nest containing nearly one hundred wasps.

Pat Article - bugs in home 4

Kitchen
There is always a warm meal for a stranger in this house. House flies that came in through the front door really like sucking the juices from the baloney in our baloney sandwich. Indian meal moths have taken a liking to the almonds in our pantry and fruit flies tend to always find the one banana that is turning black before its time. The ants living in the outdoor mulch just outside the kitchen, have made a trail through a
crack in the foundation right to the tile floor around the trash can. These uninvited guests give a new definition to an “eat-in” kitchen.

We are Not Alone
As busy as our house seems, we are no different than the house next door or any of the houses in the neighborhood across town. Insects and other critters have survived throughout time by adapting themselves to find ecosystems that give them what they need. People are happy to supply them with these ecosystems in our homes as we attempt to make our own lives comfortable. So, the next time that you open
the breadbox and a moth flies out, say “Good morning! I hope that you had a good night’s sleep!”

Fun Fact
Insects are everywhere in the world on land, but no insect spends its entire life in the ocean. The reason for this is that insects are believed to have evolved from crustaceans living in the oceans about 480 million years ago. Once the insects left the salty ocean waters, they never returned. This is quite possibly due to the fact that their crustacean cousins provide too much competition to survive in the ocean waters, or it may be something else entirely. What we do know is that on land, the insects rule!

A Guide to Clothes Moths

A Guide to Clothes Moths

By: James Feston, Insects Limited

Webbing clothes moth
Webbing clothes moths were likely introduced into the United States before the 1860’s. They often travel with clothing, rugs or other belongings containing wool or other natural animal products. The larval stage alone is responsible for damage to materials. The adult moths lack functional, chewing mouthparts. Damage is most often concentrated in dark areas including crevices or creases in their preferred food. Examples of these dark areas could be; under furniture and cushions, where carpets and
textiles are folded and in garments under collars, cuffs and folds. Adult clothes moths are secretive and are often found in these darkened places. They will attempt to hide
when disturbed and will often run, hop or fly short distances to escape. They are weak fliers compared to other moth species. The males are much more active fliers
than the females. Males actively seek out female moths in order to mate. Males and females can penetrate narrow cracks as they find their way in storage cabinets and boxes. Once mated, females look for suitable food sources to lay their eggs. The extremely small larvae can find their way into many storage containers that appear to be pest-proof making detection difficult.

clothes moth - james article

Description
The larva is whitish colored with a brown to black head. Clothes moths are small, straw-colored, yellow-tan, or buffcolored insects, with narrow wings fringed with hairs. A tuft of hairs on the head is upright and coppery to reddish-gold in color. Adult length is 7-10 mm with a wingspan of about 10 mm. A webbing clothes moth infestation is often
detected from damaged fabrics and by the presence of silken webs spun by the larvae, sometimes producing only scattered patches of silk. The webbing clothes moth larva
spins silk as a tunnel or sheet of webbing across the attacked material under which it grazes. Damage is accompanied by webbing tubes or sheets which frequently
include large amounts of frass, and infestations appear far more ‘messy’ than the damage caused by case-making clothes moth (Tinea pellionella).

clothes moth comparison

Food & Feeding
Generally, developmental time for the clothes moth from egg to adult in room temperature is approximately 45 days. Mating and egg laying begins almost immediately after adults emerge from the pupa. The adult life span of the
moth is 1 month. Adult moths do not feed.

Signs of Infestation
Clothes moth larvae feed on woolens, mohair, feathers, fur, hair, leather, dead insects and dried animal carcasses. Infestations occur in clothing, carpets, rugs, furs, fabrics,
blankets, stored wool products, upholstery, mounted animals, piano felts, fish meal, milk powder, and brush bristles. The larva may feed on fabrics of vegetable origin
or synthetics, if the fabrics are mixed with wool, or may use such materials to construct their cocoons. Synthetics, cottons, and other plant materials are not attacked by the
webbing clothes moth larvae unless these items are stained with food or body oils. Although synthetics may be ingested, they cannot be digested.

Life Cycle
Female moths can lay up to 57 small, pinhead-sized, white eggs on or near the fabric, clothing, or furnishing they infest.

Casemaking Clothes Moth
Casemaking clothes moth are worldwide in distribution. The common name of casemaking clothes moth comes from the fact that the larvae will carry a silken case with it throughout the entire larval stage until pupation. The case consists of silken material produced by the larva intertwined with fibers from the material it is feeding on.
As the larva grows, it will enlarge the case by making a slit on both sides of the case and inserting triangular sections of new material. In this same fashion, it will increase the length of the case by adding new material to either end. The case is essential to pupation and if the case is removed from the larva when it is near pupation it will die. The larva will drag the case with it as it feeds. It will thrust out its head and thoracic legs and pull the case along with it. Immediately prior to pupation, the larva will often seek a protected site such as a crevice, wall or often the ceiling of the room of the infestation.

Description
Larvae are pale yellow when hatched and, as they age, turns more white with a brownish head. Larva will always drag a silken case around with it. Adults have three dark spots on each front wing. Wings are brown/tan/gray and are long and narrow. Hind wings are fringed with long hairs. 10-14 mm wingspan.

Food and Feeding
Potential foods include any feather material, woolens, rugs, felts, hair and furs (This includes animal mounts and fur garments). It is reported that it will also feed on spices,
tobacco, hemp and skins. The case-making clothes moth will rarely spin a web on the material on which it is feeding. The larva of Tinea pellionella will feed in a
random pattern over its food source, pulling its case behind it.

Signs of Infestation
The amount of damage done to the material is based directly on how much time it spends in any one location. Fecal pellets from the feeding larvae will drop beneath the
material or fall into folds and increases in the textiles, rugs and furs. The cases for the pupating moths will often be attached to the wall or ceiling around the infested material.
Sometimes the pupal cases will be attached to the material itself, attached only by a silk thread produced by the larva. Where webbing clothes moths (Tineola bisselliella) will
often integrate their pupal cases into the fabric or fur that it feeds upon, the case for the case-making clothes moth is distinctly separate from the feeding substrate.

Life Cycle
The gravid female moth will lay 37-48 eggs randomly over potential food sources. The eggs will hatch in 4-7 days. The larval stage builds a case of silk which it enlarges as it grows. The larval stage will last from 68-87 days. Prior to pupation, the larva will often migrate to a protected area to pupate. The whole pupation period will last 9-19 days. The adult moths will only live 4-6 days. The males will be active fliers searching out the females, which generally remain stationary. A typical population will have 3–4 generations per year.

Current best Practices in Clothes Moth Management
The key to eliminating clothes moth infestations is to interrupt the clothes moth life cycle. The damaging larval stage cannot be caught in moth traps but can be eliminated
via other means. The following list represents the current best practices of a moth removal program.

Heat
Clothes moth larvae and eggs can be quickly killed with high heat. Placing garments on hangers in a closed car on a hot, sunny day will eradicate the immature stages.
Hanging garments in black plastic bags and hanging in direct sunlight on a hot day can achieve the same results. Smaller items like woolen socks, mittens, scarves, hats
and sweaters can be placed in a tumble dryer (without washing) and exposed to the heat on a high setting for 30 minutes. Larger items like rugs can be placed over the porch
banisters and exposed to the direct sun for a couple of hours then turned over so that all sides get exposed. Beating these rugs will also help dislodge eggs and larvae
from the base of the fibers.

Cold
Clothes moth larvae and eggs can also be killed with a long exposure to freezing temperatures. Items to be frozen should be wrapped in plastic, frozen in a chest freezer at – 18°C for three days. Garments can be cleaned following freezing.

Cold Storage
A good solution for Spring to Fall storage of furs is to use a cold storage service at a professional furrier or fur store.

Dry Cleaning
Expensive woolen jackets, uniforms, dresses, slacks and garments with ‘dry clean only’ labels should be taken to the dry cleaner.

Steam Cleaning
Upholstered furniture and carpets can be cleaned using a steam cleaner. Hot steam will kill eggs and larvae on contact.

Professional Cleaning
Large rugs should be taken out and cleaned by a professional service. They can put these rugs into large pools with cleaners, have them washed, dried and repaired if damaged.

Damaged or dirty furs should be cleaned by a furrier or fur store with this service. They have the proper cleaning agents and drying equipment to remove perspiration and
other spills on the hair and fabric.

Brushing
Some garments or rugs may show signs of damage (webbing or granular debris). This may be simply removed with a fine brush. This is an important step after freezing or heating garments to remove debris. If the garment is damaged in the future, new damage will be evident compared to old damage.

Vacuuming
Regular vacuuming of the carpets and rugs including under furniture can help remove eggs and larvae over time. This keeps the population from accumulating and reduces
the chances of damage. A crack and crevice tool to clean out the gaps around the edges of the rooms is extremely effective.

Prevention
After completing the large amount of cleaning, freezing and heating it would be wise to place all the clothing in ‘garment bags’ then have one side clear and the other side
breathable fabric. These will protect and prevent further attacks from moths that may have been missed or reintroduced into the home. Other small items may be placed in sealed bags or tight containers. Make sure they are sealable on all sides and do not have ‘vents’. You should also be sure that there are no active larvae in these garments or clothing before sealing them.

Trapping and Monitoring
Pheromone traps are an excellent tool to capture moths. Before and after cleaning the home and personal belongings, these traps can help monitor and evaluate the
effectiveness of any cleaning efforts. Continue to monitor sensitive areas to monitor for resurgence or reintroduction.

Inspection
It is difficult to monitor every location at all times, so visual inspection is critical to see if there is activity under various spaces present in homes such as cabinets, inside a
piano, cold air return duct, or other odd locations. If you see a moth, you should start looking around immediately to track down the source.

http://www.InsectsLimited.com

Preserving Our History: Freezing Infested Materials

by Patrick Kelley, ACE

After discovering that insects are eating away at your personal goods or museum objects, you are faced with the dilemma of how to get rid of the live bugs. Options include a wide range of treatments such as anoxia (low oxygen), inert gas, carbon dioxide, detailed vacuuming and exposure to heat. One of the most popular and easiest methods of treatment though is to simply freeze the items in question. This method is non-toxic, time efficient and does not entail extensive staff training. The museum community’s use of freezing to kill a multitude of common museum pests has been quite successful. Some museums in the United States have treated thousands of objects with low temperatures and have reported no damage on the types of objects that had warnings previously associated with exposure to cold temperatures. Freezing insects to death can be one of the best treatment options.

The general principle to follow is to expose the objects to temperatures as low as possible, as quickly as possible for as long as possible. The guidelines below will kill the majority of museum pests.

The formation of ice crystals within the bodies of the insects is what causes the killing effect. The reason why many insect species survive through icy winters is because they have time to acclimate their bodies to the cold. The insects increase the concentration of glycerol and sugars in their tissues as the temperatures slowly drop. This has the effect of an anti-freeze within their bodies and it prevents the formation of ice crystals. For this reason, it is best to hold the object that you are going to freeze at room temperature for at least one week prior to the exposure to cold. The thermal shock of the quick temperature drop catches the insects unaware and allows the temperatures to have a lethal effect.

General Guidelines for a Low Temperature Treatment:
– Use a freezer that can maintain a temperature of -20°F (-29°C).
– Objects should be placed in sealed bags to reduce ice or condensation damage.
– Sensitive items can be wrapped in tissue paper before being placed in the bags.
– Hold the items at the low temperature for a period of one week or longer.
– Large wooden items or dense materials should be left frozen for longer periods.
– After removal from the freezer, the items should remain in the sealed bags to prevent condensation.
– Once the items reach room temperature for +24 hour period, they can be removed from the bags.
– Items become temporarily brittle at low temperatures, so handling should be kept to a minimum until the items return to room temperature.

Image

Freezing insects to death can be one of the best treatment options.

References for the material used in this article include the following:
Strang, Thomas, J.K., “Controlling Insect Pests With Low Temperature.” CCI Note 3/3, Canadian Conservation Institute, 1997.
Integrated Pest Management Working Group, “Low Temperature Treatment Fact Sheet.” [Accessed 2, November, 2010] Available at http://www.museumpests.net/treatment.asp.

A Guide to Clothes Moths

A Guide to Clothes Moths

By: James Feston, Director of Product Research for Insects Limited, Inc.

Webbing clothes moth

clothes moth - james article

Webbing clothes moths were likely introduced into the United States before the 1860’s. They often travel with clothing, rugs or other belongings containing wool or other natural animal products. The larval stage alone is responsible for damage to materials. The adult moths lack functional, chewing mouthparts. Damage is most often concentrated in dark areas including crevices or creases in their preferred food. Examples of these dark areas could be; under furniture and cushions, where carpets and textiles are folded and in garments under collars, cuffs and folds. Adult clothes moths are secretive and are often found in these darkened places. They will attempt to hide when disturbed and will often run, hop or fly short distances to escape. They are weak fliers compared to other moth species. The males are much more active fliers than the females. Males actively seek out female moths in order to mate. Males and females can penetrate narrow cracks as they find their way in storage cabinets and boxes. Once mated, females look for suitable food sources to lay their eggs. The extremely small larvae can find their way into many storage containers that appear to be pest-proof making detection difficult.

Description 

The larva is whitish colored with a brown to black head. Clothes moths are small, straw-colored, yellow-tan, or buffcolored insects, with narrow wings fringed with hairs. A tuft of hairs on the head is upright and coppery to reddish-gold in color. Adult length is 7-10 mm with a wingspan of about 10 mm. A webbing clothes moth infestation is often detected from damaged fabrics and by the presence of silken webs spun by the larvae, sometimes producing only scattered patches of silk. The webbing clothes moth larva spins silk as a tunnel or sheet of webbing across the attacked material under which it grazes. Damage is accompanied by webbing tubes or sheets which frequently include large amounts of frass, and infestations appear far more ‘messy’ than the damage caused by case-making clothes moth (Tinea pellionella).

clothes moth - james article 2

Food & Feeding 

Generally, developmental time for the clothes moth from egg to adult in room temperature is approximately 45 days. Mating and egg laying begins almost immediately after adults emerge from the pupa. The adult life span of the moth is 1 month. Adult moths do not feed.

Signs of Infestation 

Clothes moth larvae feed on woolens, mohair, feathers, fur, hair,
leather, dead insects and dried animal carcasses. Infestations occur in clothing, carpets, rugs, furs, fabrics, blankets, stored wool products, upholstery, mounted animals, piano felts, fish meal, milk powder, and brush bristles. The larva may feed on fabrics of vegetable origin or synthetics, if the fabrics are mixed with wool, or may use such materials to construct their cocoons. Synthetics, cottons, and other plant materials are not attacked by the webbing clothes moth larvae unless these items are stained with food or body oils. Although synthetics may be ingested, they cannot be digested.

Signs of Infestation 

Clothes moth larvae feed on woolens, mohair, feathers, fur, hair,
leather, dead insects and dried animal carcasses. Infestations occur in clothing, carpets, rugs, furs, fabrics, blankets, stored wool products, upholstery, mounted animals, piano felts, fish meal, milk powder, and brush bristles. The larva may feed on fabrics of vegetable origin or synthetics, if the fabrics are mixed with wool, or may use such materials to construct their cocoons. Synthetics, cottons, and other plant materials are not attacked by the webbing clothes moth larvae unless these items are stained with food or body oils. Although synthetics may be ingested, they cannot be digested.

Life Cycle 

Female moths can lay up to 57 small, pinhead-sized, white eggs on or near the fabric, clothing, or furnishing they infest.

Casemaking Clothes Moth 

Casemaking clothes moths are worldwide in distribution. The common name of casemaking clothes moth comes from the fact that the larvae will carry a silken case with it throughout the entire larval stage until pupation. The case consists of silken material produced by the larva intertwined with fibers from the material it is feeding on. As the larva grows, it will enlarge the case by making a slit on both sides of the case and inserting triangular sections of new material. In this same fashion, it will increase the length of the case by adding new material to either end. The case is essential to pupation and if the case is removed from the larva when it is near pupation it will die. The larva will drag the case with it as it feeds. It will thrust out its head and thoracic legs and pull the case along with it. Immediately prior to pupation, the larva will often seek a protected site such as a crevice, wall or often the ceiling of the room of the infestation.

Description

Larvae are pale yellow when hatched and, as they age, turns more white with a brownish head. Larva will always drag a silken case around with it.
Adults have three dark spots on each front wing. Wings are brown/tan/gray and are long and narrow. Hind wings are fringed with long hairs.

Food and Feeding 

Potential foods include any feather material, woolens, rugs, felts, hair and furs (This includes animal mounts and fur garments). It is reported that it will also feed on spices, tobacco, hemp and skins. The case-making clothes moth will rarely spin a web on the material on which it is feeding. The larva of Tinea pellionella will feed in a random pattern over its food source, pulling its case behind it.

Signs of Infestation 

The amount of damage done to the material is based directly on how much time it spends in any one location. Fecal pellets from the feeding larvae will drop beneath the material or fall into folds and increases in the textiles, rugs and furs. The cases for the pupating moths will often be attached to the wall or ceiling around the infested material. Sometimes the pupal cases will be attached to the material itself, attached only by a silk thread produced by the larva. Where webbing clothes moths (Tineola bisselliella) will often integrate their pupal cases into the fabric or fur that it feeds upon, the case for the case-making clothes moth is distinctly separate from the feeding substrate.

Life Cycle 

The gravid female moth will lay 37-48 eggs randomly over potential food sources. The eggs will hatch in 4-7 days. The larval stage builds a case of silk which it enlarges as it grows. The larval stage will last from 68-87 days. Prior to pupation, the larva will often migrate to a protected area to pupate. The whole pupation period will last 9-19 days. The adult moths will only live 4-6 days. The males will be active fliers searching out the females, which generally remain stationary. A typical population will have 3–4 generations per year.
Current best Practices in Clothes Moth Management 

The key to eliminating clothes moth infestations is to interrupt the clothes moth life cycle. The damaging larval stage cannot be caught in moth traps but can be eliminated via other means. The following list represents the current best practices of a moth removal program.

Heat 

Clothes moth larvae and eggs can be quickly killed with high heat. Placing garments on hangers in a closed car on a hot, sunny day will eradicate the immature stages. Hanging garments in black plastic bags and hanging in direct sunlight on a hot day can achieve the same results. Smaller items like woolen socks, mittens, scarves, hats and sweaters can be placed in a tumble dryer (without washing) and exposed to the heat on a high setting for 30 minutes. Larger items like rugs can be placed over the porch banisters and exposed to the direct sun for a couple of hours then turned over so that all sides get exposed. Beating these rugs will also help dislodge eggs and larvae from the base of the fibers.

Cold 

Clothes moth larvae and eggs can also be killed with a long exposure to freezing temperatures. Items to be frozen should be wrapped in plastic, frozen in a chest freezer at 18°C for three days. Garments can be cleaned following freezing.

Cold Storage 

A good solution for Spring to Fall storage of furs is to use a cold storage service at a professional furrier or fur store.
Dry Cleaning 

Expensive woolen jackets, uniforms, dresses, slacks and garments with ‘dry clean only’ labels should be taken to the dry cleaner.
Steam Cleaning 

Upholstered furniture and carpets can be cleaned using a steam cleaner. Hot steam will kill eggs and larvae on contact.
Professional Cleaning

Large rugs should be taken out and cleaned by a professional service. They can put these rugs into large pools with cleaners, have them washed, dried and repaired if damaged.
Damaged or dirty furs should be cleaned by a furrier or fur store with this service. They have the proper cleaning agents and drying equipment to remove perspiration and other spills on the hair and fabric.

Brushing 

Some garments or rugs may show signs of damage (webbing or granular debris). This may be simply removed with a fine brush. This is an important step after freezing or heating garments to remove debris. If the garment is damaged in the future, new damage will be evident compared to old damage.
Vacuuming

Regular vacuuming of the carpets and rugs including under furniture can help remove eggs and larvae over time. This keeps the population from accumulating and reduces the chances of damage. A crack and crevice tool to clean out the gaps around the edges of the rooms is extremely effective.

Prevention 

After completing the large amount of cleaning, freezing and heating it would be wise to place all the clothing in ‘garment bags’ then have one side clear and the other side breathable fabric. These will protect and prevent further attacks from moths that may have been missed or reintroduced into the home. Other small items may be placed in sealed bags or tight containers. Make sure they are sealable on all sides and do not have ‘vents’. You should also be sure that there are no active larvae in these garments or clothing before sealing them.

Trapping and Monitoring 

Pheromone traps are an excellent tool to capture moths. Before and after cleaning the home and personal belongings, these traps can help monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of any cleaning efforts. Continue to monitor sensitive areas to monitor for resurgence or reintroduction.
Inspection

It is difficult to monitor every location at all times, so visual inspection is critical to see if there is activity under various spaces present in homes such as cabinets, inside a piano, cold air return duct, or other odd locations. If you see a moth, you should start looking around immediately to track down the source.
Insects Limited, Inc.

16950 Westfield Park Rd., Westfield, IN.46074

InsectsLimited.com

Phone:1-317-896-9300

Fax: 1-317-867-5757

Bad Bugs: Indian Meal Moth

by Alain VanRyckeghem, BCE Technical Director

What is the most critical damage caused by Indian meal moths – individually or as a whole?

Indian meal moths (IMM) either directly consume the stored food product, (bird seed, pet foods, candy bars etc.) and contaminate it with their presence, webbing, and waist products, or they indirectly contaminate product (food and nonfood) in storage from wandering larvae in search of pupation sites. One infested package of product can be a source of larvae that search out other food products to continue feeding or usually to pupate on the surface or interior spaces of the packages. Perfectly sealed packages that contain baby formula, for example, may have no infestation, but the presence of larvae on the container will cause consumer complaints and rejection of the product. This is essentially collateral damage from another food product.

Why is monitoring for IMM crucial, and what is the best way to monitor?

Monitoring for IMM is designed to be an early warning system. Detection of a couple of moths early in the season can help prevent or reduce further outbreaks during the summer and fall. Traps with sex pheromones to attract male moths are a tool that can operate 24 hours 7 days a week and can be placed in any environment. Placement can be in a grid system to detect recent invasions or can be targeted (concentrated) to monitor selected storage areas or help pinpoint the infestation.

Moth traps need to be monitored weekly, due to the trap’s short life cycle. The objective is to detect sudden rises in catch rates indicating a recent introduction of infested product or a sanitation issue that has been overlooked. Lure and traps are to be replaced according to manufacturer’s recommendation which is usually 8 weeks. All traps and lures should be replaced at the same time. Do not stagger the replacement schedule as this leads to old lures stationed beside new lures, resulting in misinterpretation of the source infestations.

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What are the steps that should be taken if IMM are detected?

If IMM are detected, inspection of product near the monitors with most activity is necessary. Flashlight inspections to find active larvae, webbing, and food spills are the primary goals of the inspection. Detection of insect activity will require movement and segregation of the product for further action. This may include cleaning, disassembly, fumigation or disposal. Pallets with insect activity should be covered with a PE pallet cover before moving to reduce accidental dispersal to uninfested areas. Sanitation issues should be cleaned up and discarded outdoors in an approved dumpster system. Continue monitoring traps at the area of original activity and adjacent traps. Further activity will require repeated inspections.

How can IMM moth infestations be prevented?

The first line of defense to prevent infestation of a facility is to stop infested materials from being accepted at the receiving areas. This requires receivers to be aware of the presence of webbing on boxes or bags, live and dead larvae in the stretch wrap, and live moths flying out of the trailer or off a pallet. These are clear signs of activity and should not be ignored. Detailed inspection can locate these products with activity and should be rejected. The potential use of a pheromone trap in the trailer placed by the vendor at the time of shipment can also give an early warning to the receiver if this trailer has moth activity.

Is there anything else I should be aware of about IMM activity?

Indian meal moths are temperature dependent. Moth flight and reproduction usually does not occur when the environment is below 64 °F. The absence of Indian meal moths in pheromone traps in cool warehouses or cold trailers during shipment is not a fool proof way of determining if moths are present or if larvae are actively feeding on stored product in storage. At these times, a proactive inspection program by the PMP or in house sanitarian is recommended.

Outdoor trapping, making it work for you

Outdoor trapping, making it work for you

Outdoor trapping can be one of the most important, and most overlooked elements of your pheromone program. Read on to learn why it is important as well as some common misconceptions, and how to set up a program.

Knowing the pest pressure coming from outdoors can explain interior trap catches that don’t seem to relate to an infestation indoors..  Several types of common food pests can exist in large numbers in the wild and may just be waiting to come inside. The most common source for some of these insects in residential areas may be from nearby trees that have dropped acorns, walnuts, hickory nuts etc, in the autumn months. Another common source is bird seed in a neighbor’s garage that becomes infested. In industrial settings, infestations can come from nearby food manufacturing facilities, spilled grain on rail tracks, spillage from grain bins, or from grain that has fallen on the ground in agriculture fields.

It is common and perfectly reasonable question to ask “If I’m putting pheromone traps near my facility, aren’t I attracting insects to come in?!” The short answer is “no.” Pheromone traps attract only males who are incapable of infesting product. Also, if you are catching insects in your traps you know that the insects are ALREADY THERE If you know you are catching males in your pheromone traps, females are present as well but are not drawn to the trap. The information you are gaining from your outdoor trapping program can be used to enhance your pest program as well as reduce infestations

Warm months are the best time to monitor your outside insect pressure. The most common food insects found outdoors are warehouse beetle, Indian meal moth, and cigarette beetle. Your goal is to create an outdoor perimeter by placing traps 30-50’ away from the building being monitored. Place the traps approximately 50’ apart if possible, larger facilities may require 75-100’. Tie off the traps on existing fences, trees or onto stakes placed into the ground. Doorways and outdoor loading docks are one of your biggest sources of infiltration meaning that these areas should have a greater concentration of outdoor monitors. Aim for 20-30’ spacing in these high-risk areas.

Outdoor trapping can provide you with real information to help you solve your individual pest problem. Outdoor trapping kits are available at Insects Limited here: Warehouse Beetle and Indian Meal Moth. For other insects or for use and placement advice call us anytime and our helpful staff can put together a custom kit to fit your program.