A local family whose lives have been made a misery by an infestation of moths are warning other households to be on the lookout for what they term these destructive pests.
They say the insects have eaten “inches upon inches” of their wool carpets and are very difficult to remove.
The family, who do not wish to be named, own other property which is also infested with moths and say they know of other households which have had similar experiences.
“We pulled out a corner unit doing a summer clean-up and noticed huge chunks of carpet had been eaten by the larvae, they are long, thin silvery things like a seed. There was an absolute infestation of them. We’ve been through the house on our hands and knees looking for them. Boy, are they destructive. They are vicious, they have voracious appetites. They eat the carpets in corners, they eat inches and inches of carpet. We bought five or six sets of bags for the vacuum cleaner and hoovered them up.
“We have other property and they are there, also. We’ve seen them in other people’s houses, too but it’s not a thing people want to talk about.”
The family did an internet search to try to find a product to keep them away. “We got a natural product and we leave it in the rooms and they dislike it. Meanwhile we are hoovering them up and trying to get them out of the house. We are doing a daily trawl, they are so invasive. We take out the beds because they go in there, too.
“We never had this issue before and we are wondering why it has happened now. Is it because of the damp summer, that the conditions were ideal for them? We want to warn other people, lots have had their carpets destroyed by them - they love wool. We are wondering if there is any cure for them, if any readers have any idea how to get rid of them.”
Paul Cadden, business manager of Rentokil pest control for the border, midlands and western region, says his company has not seen a “dramatic increase” in moth activity recently.
Insect infestation is a problem that can occur all year round, he explains. “We find you can get a lot of problems with insects early on in the year when they come out of hibernation in April/May when the temperature begins to rise or else around this time of year when the weather starts to change and insects begin to hibernate. But I can’t say we have seen a dramatic increase in moth activity. Our big call out is in relation to millipedes.”
Referring to the Galway family’s moth problem he says the larvae do all the damage, not the adult moth.
“If the carpet is being damaged, it is not the adult moth who is doing it, the larvae do all the damage. The female does not have any feeding parts, her sole purpose is to reproduce. When we get call-outs about moth infestation we could go in and carry out a spray treatment.”