I recently had an experience with pantry moths. I am 63 years old, and have never, to my knowledge, had pantry moths before. I had no idea where they were coming from, and worked hard to make sure that no one stood with an outside door open to let them in. I was sure they were entering my house when I let my dogs in. I could see them on the ceiling of my pantry, and later, on and under the shelves. No matter how many I killed, there were always more.
Where did They Really Come From?
A friend of mine had seen these in the past and talked to an exterminator friend of his. I also did a little research on my own. It turns out these annoying creatures probably came in with food I had purchased at the store. The moths lay their eggs inside boxes and bags of rice, flour, cereal, and other yummy things like cake mix. When the eggs hatch, the larvae feed on whatever treats in which they have been deposited until they reach the pupa stage and make a cocoon. From there, they emerge as adults and no longer feed. They do, however, lay hundreds of eggs, continuing the cycle of life in the pantry.
How Do You Get Rid of Them?
My research showed that the best way to control these pests, is to take everything out of the pantry and wash the shelves with soap and water, and then vinegar water, to remove the eggs and kill any larvae. I personally had to throw a lot of food away, and it is recommended to throw away infested food. Any food that might contain moth eggs can be placed in the freezer for 8 days to help kill the eggs and then placed in an airtight plastic container, to eliminate ability for any new moths to feed.
These Rubbermaid containers will help store foods in your pantry as well as in the refrigerator.
Best of luck with controlling these pests!