The Webbing Clothes MothA female clothing moth can deposit hundreds of tiny eggs on clothing and furniture fabric. They prefer material made from silk or wool. Once larvae hatch from the eggs, they will begin consuming fibers immediately. Quiet and dark areas like attics, drawers, or closet corners that remain undisturbed for long periods make excellent nesting areas for a pregnant clothes moth. If the infestation is bad enough, homeowners may notice a thin, webby veil covering places where moth larvae are busily devouring fabric fibers.
In warm conditions, a clothing moth egg will hatch within 10 days but may take up to 30 days in colder weather. Because these eggs closely resemble larvae excrement, a moth control expert is usually required to examine damaged articles to determine the extent of the infestation and establish the type of moth control treatment needed to eliminate the problem.
Another type of fabric-eating moth larvae commonly found in the U.S. is the casemaking clothes moth. Slightly smaller than the webbing clothes moth, the casemaking moth is similar to the webbing moth with the exception of appearing more frequently in southern U.S. states. The casemaking moth will lay two generations of eggs each year if conditions are favorable.
Clothing moths have adapted to digesting and utilizing the proteins found in keratin to sustain their life processes. Animal skin and hair contain keratin, which is why these moths prefer wool, silk and leather items, although they will chew through non-keratin containing things in order to get to their favorite fabrics.
Mothballs as a Form of Moth ControlAccording to the National Pesticide Information Center's website, mothballs represent a usually ineffective and potentially toxic kind of moth control. Mothballs contain paradichlorobenzene or naphthalene, active ingredients that may produce adverse symptoms in people who are exposed to the vaporous insecticide fumes emitted by mothballs. In addition, numerous cases of accidental poisonings due to pets or children mistaking mothballs for something edible continue to be reported each year.
To avoid further destruction of clothing, furniture and other valuable items, individuals suspecting a moth infestation should contact a professional exterminator to begin safely and thoroughly removing the clothing moth and its destructive larvae from the home.<