Clothes Moth / Carpet Moth

What are Clothes Moths?

There are two species of Clothes Moths / Carpet Moths in the UK. By far the most frequently found being the Common Clothes Moth, sometimes known as the Webbing Clothes Moth (Tineola bisselliella). The other species is the Case Bearing Clothes Moth (Tinea pellionella) which are not identified as often. Adult moths are small and have golden wings. The larvae are white with a brown head capsule.

Clothes Moth Damage & Symptoms

The adult moths do not cause damage but lay the eggs that develop into the larvae that will feed on woollen clothing, upholstery, and carpets. The larvae create a webbing around material and then consume what is inside it, making holes and shredding clothes and fabrics. The adult moths prefer warm dark places such as closets and cupboards.

How To Control Clothes Moths

The first step is to put out Clothes Moth Pheromone Traps, these will attract and catch male Clothes Moth adults. These males will then be unable to breed with females which reduces egg laying. Once moths are observed in the traps, it can be assumed that some females will be about to start egg laying. It is at this time that introductions of Trichogramma parasitic wasps can be considered. These tiny insects parasitize the Clothes Moth eggs, preventing them from developing into the damaging Clothes Moth larvae.