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How do I get Rid of Pantry Moths?

Banishing pantry moths requires a multi-step approach: thoroughly clean your pantry, discard infested foods, and store items in airtight containers. Consider natural deterrents like bay leaves or cedar. Consistency is key to keeping these pests at bay. Want to ensure your pantry remains moth-free? Read on for our comprehensive guide to pantry moth prevention and maintenance.
Erin J. Hill
Erin J. Hill

Pantry moths can be a real problem when they infest cupboards and other areas since they lay eggs in food and can lead to spoilage. You can get rid of an infestation by buying foods and placing them in mothproof containers, sealing off hiding places, and using moth traps and natural repellents. There are also safe ways to use pesticides so that they don’t do harm to your food items.

One way to get rid of pantry moths is to combine traps with pesticides. To do this, mix a small amount of boric acid with a food moths commonly eat, like flour or cornmeal. Put this on sticky paper to lure them in. They will have to land to eat the food and become trapped on the paper. If they don’t become trapped, the acid will kill them.

Moth balls.
Moth balls.

Be sure not to get the poison on your food items, as it is also harmful to humans. It is also not recommended that you use moth balls in the pantry, as these are poisonous to humans and have a strong odor. They are also not suitable to use around food.

There are natural repellents which may also keep pantry moths at bay. Cedar and rosemary both keep bugs from entering your home and may encourage them to leave. You can also be sure to keep crumbs, hair, and other items moths eat out of the floor and keep food containers tightly sealed. To keep them from hiding when you are trying to kill them, seal doors, cracks, windows, and other areas, use caulk to seal them off.

Moths.
Moths.

You may also choose to use sticky paper which contains pheromones, which attract moths. These are natural hormones that moths secrete and are attracted to. The issue with this is that various species of moths react to different hormones, so you will need to know the exact type of moth you are dealing with. You can learn this by looking up common moths online or reading about them in a book.

To kill eggs in your food, you can put items in the freezer. You may also choose to throw out any unused flour, oatmeal, cornmeal, and other staples and buy new. Be sure to use an airtight canister since moths can squeeze into tight spaces easily.

Different species of moths secrete different hormones that they are attracted to, which can complicate the process of getting rid of them.
Different species of moths secrete different hormones that they are attracted to, which can complicate the process of getting rid of them.

If your efforts do not work a pest expert may be needed to get rid of pantry moths. They may have pesticides which are not harmful to humans that can be used. Many guarantee their work, so if moths are not killed the first time, the professionals will come back until they are gone.

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    • Moth balls.
      Moth balls.
    • Moths.
      By: Eric Isselée
      Moths.
    • Different species of moths secrete different hormones that they are attracted to, which can complicate the process of getting rid of them.
      By: Vitalii Hulai
      Different species of moths secrete different hormones that they are attracted to, which can complicate the process of getting rid of them.
    • A professional exterminator may need to be brought in to deal with a serious moth infestation.
      By: mertcan
      A professional exterminator may need to be brought in to deal with a serious moth infestation.