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Subject: Moths


From: Corinna Herrmann <corinna.herrmann>
Date: Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Lori Arnold <woodbldg [at] aol__com> writes

>They are tiny little moths, yellowish beige in color. ...
>They are tiny little moths, yellowish beige in color. The damage
>doesn't appear to create a hole in the clothing, though. An infested
>sweater will have little web-like casings all over it, usually in
>the direction of the knit. Another characteristic of the damage is a
>sandy debris under an object that hasn't been disturbed. For
>instance, a wool cat toy recently was discovered covered in the
>webbing. When I picked it up to throw it away, there was a pile of
>this sandy substance. Whenever I think I have found the article that
>is housing the majority of them--the "nest" lets say--I find
>something else that's worse.
>I know that freezing will get rid of infested pieces, but this is
>too big a problem for that at this point.

The bad news first: It will be very hard getting rid of moths all
and forever.

>    What is their life cycle?

Their mating cycle is roughly between May and October. Only then you
will see them flying.

>    Are they eating the fabric?

Yes, their larvae thrive on wool in particular. The sandy stuff
is--I believe--their excrement.

>What remedial measures can I take to get the infestation under

Freezing for at least four to six weeks is a good start, but not
possible when it comes to rugs and other large items. Pheromone
traps are an alternative. They will also show you how bad the
infestation is by the number of corpses stuck to them. But you never
catch all males that way. Moths like growing undisturbed, for
example in a piece of rug with furniture on top of it. No vacuum
cleaner or other cleaning device will harm them there. (Not that
it helps you any: I am struggling for years already in a hundred
year old house and have only managed to reduce the population)

Corinna Herrmann
Herzogin Anna Amalia Bibliothek
Werkstatt fur Buchrestaurierung und -konservierung
Postfach 2012
99401 Weimar
Burgplatz 4
99423 Weimar
+49 03643 545262

                  Conservation DistList Instance 21:24
               Distributed: Saturday, September 29, 2007
                       Message Id: cdl-21-24-006
Received on Tuesday, 11 September, 2007

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