Do pantry moths eat clothes?

In this article we are going to answer do pantry moths eat clothes, what are pantry moths, what pantry moths are most attracted to, what is the difference between pantry moths and clothes moths, and how to get rid of pantry moths. 

Do pantry moths eat clothes?

No, pantry moths don’t eat clothes. They usually eat food that is found in your kitchen. Whereas, a different species than pantry moths, can eat your clothes. 

Clothes moths eat the natural fiber of your clothes, drapes, curtains, carpet, bedding, or anything that is made with silk, cotton, wool, or anything similar. 

What are pantry moths?

Pantry moths are one of the most common moths that can be found in your house. Pantry moths are part of the species Plodia Interpunctella or also known as Indian meal moths. 

Full-grown pantry moths measure about half an inch in length and they have gray and reddish wings with black stripes. 

Once you see pantry moths flying around your kitchen, they are probably already larvae in your pantry. Moth larvae are white and measure about half an inch in length. They will be found inside containers of dry food. 

Pantry moths can lay about 400 eggs per week. Once they become larvae, they start damaging your pantry because they chew whatever they can. After 2 to 3 weeks, moths become cocoons, that is when they are more easily found in cracks. 

After 15 to 20 days of becoming cocoons, they become fully grown adults. Adult female moths lay eggs near food so larvae can eat more easily. 

They can get into your house through doors, open windows, vents, or cables. Moths have a huge sense of smell which makes it easier for them to get to your kitchen. The best way to prevent pantry moths is to store food correctly by using airtight containers. 

Pantry moths are most commonly found in house kitchens, restaurants or industrial kitchens, stores selling foods, and food processing plants. Once food has been infested with moth larvae, food has to be thrown away. 

What pantry moths are most attracted to?

Pantry moths usually eat dry food that is stored in your pantry. Food that attracts the most pantry moths include

  • Oatmeal
  • Cereal
  • Flour
  • Grains
  • Cornmeal
  • Rice
  • Nuts
  • Pet food
  • Birseeds
  • Dry pasta
  • Dried fruits
  • Spices
  • Processes snacks

What is the difference between pantry moths and clothes moths?

Cloth moths and pantry moths are different species that eat different things that are found in your house. 

Cloth moths are two species known as Tineola bisselliella and Tinea pellionella. Cloth moths are small half and inch animals that are gray with hairy wings. They are hard to spot because they avoid light and eat your clothes, curtains, carpet, bedding, or anything similar during the night. 

Cloth moths can be considered cousins of pantry moths but they are different in color and eat different things. Cloth moths have a similar life cycle to pantry moths but they differ in days and pantry moths can reproduce quickly. 

Cloth mothsPantry moths
Days60 to 90 days 70 days
Eggs lays50 eggs400 eggs per week near food sources
FoodThey eat clothe or similar. They eat dry food commonly found in your pantry. 

How to get rid of pantry moths?

Once you see those little animals flying around your house, you are probably already infected with pantry months. The best way to get rid of them completely is to

  • Clean out your pantry. Remove everything you have in your pantry even if you think it is not infested. 
  • Discard all food that is infested. If there is something that you don’t know is infested, you can store it in the freezer for 2 weeks. The cold will kill any eggs. 
  • Vacuum all your house and pantry. Clean and disinfect all surfaces of your kitchen. 
  • Apply a moth trap and insecticide to prevent them from growing again. 
  • Once clean, store all your food in airtight containers or freeze food you are not going to use in the short run. The best containers to use are glass, plastic or metallic containers with a good lid. 

If you need more information on how to get rid of pantry moths follow this link. 

Conclusion

This article answered do pantry moths eat clothes, what are pantry moths, what pantry moths are most attracted to, what is the difference between pantry moths and clothes moths, and how to get rid of pantry moths.

Citation

https://www.terro.com/pantry-moths

https://drkilligans.com/blogs/insects/can-pantry-moths-eat-my-clothing#:~:text=But%20do%20pantry%20moths%20eat,hidden%20in%20your%20coat%20pocket.

https://maggiesfarmproducts.com/blogs/bug-help/clothes-moths-vs-pantry-moths

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