Conservation DistList Archives [Date] [Subject] [Author] [SEARCH]

Subject: Pest infestations in fiberglass sculpture

Pest infestations in fiberglass sculpture

From: Paul Storch <paul.storch<-at->
Date: Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Robin Croskery Howard <robincroskeryhoward<-a t->semtribe< . >com>

>Our museum is considering re-installing a large painted fiberglass
>work.  For the past five years, it was stored in a truck without any
>sort of temperature or humidity controls.  After examination, there
>is evidence of both insect and rodent infestation.  ...

In order to properly recommend an effective course of treatment,
there are a few questions:

    Is this a three dimensional piece?

    If so, can it be disassembled?

    Are all surfaces/openings more or less accessible for cleaning,
    i.e. vacuum hoses, or are there inaccessible sections that might
    be harboring pests?

    Your brief description sounds more like a pest "occupation"
    rather than a true infestation.  Are they organic components
    that can be infested by burrowing insects?

If you can access most or all of the piece, a thorough cleaning with
compressed air and vacuuming should be sufficient to remove the
pests. Once cleaned, it should be brought inside to an area where it
can be quarantined for at least two weeks to make sure that there
are no problems.

If the above is not possible due to the configuration of the object,
then you could consider anoxic treatment using CO2 or a combination
CO2/phosphene fumigation.  My suggestion would be to contact a
professional pest control company in your area that specializes in
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and is state licensed for

Also, for more information on anoxic treatments/fumigation and
technical assistance contact

    Insects Limited, Inc.

You will also find useful information and help with anoxia on


You can also post your query on the Museumpests List at

Paul S. Storch
Project Specialist II/Collections Liaison
Historic Properties Office
Central Administration
Historic Sites and Museums Division
Minnesota Historical Society
345 Kellogg Blvd. West
Saint Paul, MN 55102-1906

                  Conservation DistList Instance 27:15
               Distributed: Saturday, September 28, 2013
                       Message Id: cdl-27-15-005
Received on Tuesday, 24 September, 2013

[Search all CoOL documents]

URL: http://