A reader reached out to us with this message, “I bought a bag of dog food and after 3 days I found Indian Meal Moth Larvae in the bag. I threw the bag of dog food away. I do not keep the food in my pantry or kitchen. What are the chances that the larvae will spread to my kitchen or anywhere else. I didn’t see any moths yet, just larvae. I am very worried about an infestation.”
She didn’t send us a photograph of the specimens she found, but we agree that they were most likely Indian Meal Moth Larvae (the picture posted with this article is from another reader.) Indian Meal Moth Larvae, also known as pantry moth larvae, are common household pests. These larvae are about half an inch long and are off-white colored with a pink hue. They feed on a wide variety of food items such as cereals, flours, herbs, nuts, and even pet food such as dog food.
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Since our reader discovered these larvae shortly after purchasing the bag of dog food, we believe that they entered her home already in the bag of dog food and didn’t come from another item in her pantry. Also, since she immediately got rid of the bag, we don’t think it is very likely that she will discover more of these Indian Meal Moth Larvae in her pantry, especially since she mentioned that she doesn’t store the dog food in her kitchen. If she is still worried about an infestation, she can rearrange her pantry so that all food items are stored in air tight containers. In addition, she can clean up any debris lying around to get rid of any other potential food sources for pests.
To wrap up, a reader reached out to us because she discovered some Indian Meal Moth Larvae in a new bag of dog food. She wanted to know the likelihood of an infestation. Since she threw out the bag after discovering the larvae, we don’t think it is very likely that she will experience an infestation.
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