What are Indian meal moths? If you have food pantry members in your family, you might have come across the larvae of Indian meal moths.
But what exactly are these larvae, and how do we know if they’re infested with larvae? In this blog, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about meal moth larvae, including how to identify them, the food pantry pest control methods that work best against them, and more.
So without further ado, let’s get into it.
What are Indian Meal Moths
Indian meal moths are a type of Lepidoptera (butterfly and moth) that feed on food products, including cereals, grains, dried fruits, and pet food.
These moths are found in the United States and Canada.
They can cause serious damage to food products, including grains, cereals, and dried fruits.
Indian meal moths are smaller than house moths and have brown bodies with white tufts on their forewings.
They usually infest pantries, grocery stores, and pet food stores.
Indian meal moths are treated using various methods, including pesticides and fumigation.
While pesticides have been proved to be effective against infestation of Indian meal moths, they have harmful effects on the environment and people.
There is no specific antidote for treating infestations of Indian meal moths.
However, treatment will often eliminate the insect from the affected area.
What do adult Indian Meal Moths look like?
Adult Indian meal moths look like brown, inch-long moth with a wingspan of about 1-1/2 inches.
They are often seen near indoor pantries, food storage areas, and kitchens.
Their larvae eat dry food such as flour and meal, spices, and other foodstuffs.
You can identify Indian meal moths by their distinctive Do-Not-Destroy (DND) tag.
This tag is white with black writing and is usually found on food packaging or in the pantry.
It indicates the product has been checked for infestation by the food processing industry or the government agency responsible for pest control.
As mentioned earlier, adult Indian meal moths are not harmful but larvae causes damage to food.
Their infestation may lead to infestation of other pests such as silverfish and mice in a house.
In this case, you should take measures to prevent infestation of larvae of meal moth from happening in your home.
Are Indian Meal Moths and Pantry Moths the same?
Indian meal moths and pantry moths are different species of moths.
Indian meal moths are more common in the United States, while pantry moths are more common in Europe.
Both moth species feed on food items such as flour, cereal, dried fruits, and nuts.
However, pantry moths tend to feed on food items more frequently than Indian meal moths.
The larvae of both moth species create damage by eating through the surface of food items or clothing.
They do so by infesting food sources with their larvae, which can eat through the item’s surface and cause holes or tears in it.
They also leave behind webbing material behind when they infest a food source.
The webbing material can cause irritation to the skin of those who have come into contact with it.
Both moth species can be controlled using insect control products, such as moth traps or insecticide spray.
Keep your pantries and cupboards clean to avoid infestation of these pests.
As you can see, meal moth infestation is a common pest that affects food storage.
They easily infest food storage containers and pantries as they look for food.
Besides pantries, meal moth larvae also infest food such as cereals, grains, spices, flours, nuts, and dried fruit.
It’s essential to store food in pest-proof airtight containers and to keep pantries pest-free.
If you are looking to control meal moth infestation at your home, we suggest following a regular pest control routine.
Remember to regularly inspect the pantry and pantry storage areas for pest activity and take prompt action against them.