Case-making clothes moths

What do case-making clothes moths look like?

a case making clothes moth in a closet in a home in davenport iowa

Adult case-making clothes moths grow to be between 3/8 and 1/2 of an inch in length. Their long, narrow wings are brownish-gray and may or may not have three dark spots on them. Young adult case-making clothes moths generally have the dark spots on their wings, but the spots may not be visible in older moths because they tend to rub off over time. While adult moths have wings, they rarely fly. Instead, when they are disturbed, they scurry away. The larval stage of the case-making clothes moth is grub-like in appearance, cream or yellow with a brown head, and can grow up to 1/2 an inch in length. The larva has one eye on each side of its head and creates a distinctive case of silk particles that it lives in and takes with it as it feeds.

Where are case-making clothes moths found?

Adult case-making clothes moths do not like bright lights. Because of this, they are found living in dark, quiet areas inside Iowa or Illinois homes and other buildings. Once inside, they are generally found in undisturbed storage areas like basements, attics, closets, and crawlspaces. As the larvae feed, they cause damage to items found in your home. The adults do not eat. In fact, they live for only a few short days; females 3-8 days, and males 3-5 days.

What do case-making clothes moths eat?

The larva of the case-making clothes moth feed on a wide variety of organic items. Food sources for the larva include: feathers, animal hides, taxidermy specimens, dry herbs, tobacco, furs, animal hair, carpets, wool and cotton clothing, and furniture.

DIY case-making clothes moth prevention and control tips

Homeowners generally don’t know that case-making clothes moths have invaded their home until they pull a damaged item out of storage. Because of this, putting the following preventative measures in place to protect your belongings from these pests is important:

  • Floors and rugs should be routinely vacuumed to remove excess dust and pet hair.

  • Furniture and rugs in your home should be professionally cleaned on a regular basis. 

  • Taxidermy specimens should be treated with an appropriate protectant.

  • Before storing fabric items made of wool or natural fibers, they should be washed or dry-cleaned and placed in airtight containers.

Professional case-making clothes moth control

If you’re dealing with case-making clothes moths or other fabric pests, Quik-Kill is ready to help you eliminate these pests. For more information on our residential and commercial pest control services specific to case-making clothes moths, please contact us today.

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