Every spring and early summer, Colorado residents experience an annual invasion that can leave them feeling frustrated and overwhelmed: the arrival of miller moths. These migratory insects descend upon the state in large numbers. Officially known as army cutworm moths, they arrive in Colorado seeking shelter and breeding opportunities. Read on to learn about miller moth behavior, their impact on Colorado residents, and effective strategies for minimizing their presence in your home.
Understanding Miller Moths
Miller moths are part of the army cutworm moth species, known scientifically as Euxoa auxiliaris. Miller moths can primarily be found in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions, including Colorado. They are known for their distinct appearance, with dusty gray or brown wings and white markings on their wings. Miller moths mainly fly at night and are attracted to light sources. They often swarm around outdoor lights or find their way indoors through open doors and windows. According to Colorado Public Radio, the moths are right on time in Colorado this year, although some feel they arrived a little early.
The Miller Moth Invasion
The influx of miller moths in Colorado typically occurs during the spring and early summer months. This is when the moths migrate from lower elevations to higher altitudes for breeding and feeding. Miller moths can be overwhelming, as they are known to gather in large numbers. Although miller moths are not harmful, their sheer numbers and tendency to flutter around can be annoying and frustrating. As reported by Fox21, moths are beneficial to our ecosystem, but with all of the recent rain, they may be headed inside your home.
Managing Miller Moths
While it may be impossible to completely rid your home of miller moths, there are effective strategies you can employ to manage their presence and reduce their impact on your home. Here are some practical tips:
Sealing Entry Points: Inspect your home for any cracks, gaps, or openings that moths can use to enter. Seal these entry points using caulk or weatherstripping to create a more secure barrier.
Minimizing Attractants: Turn off unnecessary outdoor lights during peak moth activity hours to reduce their attraction. Consider using yellow or sodium vapor bulbs, as they are less appealing to moths.
Installing Screens: Use screens on windows, doors, and vents to create a physical barrier. By doing so, you can keep miller moths from entering your home while still allowing for ventilation.
Strategic Lighting: If you need to have lights on at night, place them away from entrances or use outdoor fixtures specifically designed to attract fewer moths. Consider redirecting light sources away from windows and doorways.
Vacuuming and Removal: Use a handheld vacuum cleaner to capture and remove any moths that have made their way inside your home. Afterwards, be sure to empty the vacuum outside to prevent them from reentering.
While miller moths may be an annual nuisance in Colorado, understanding their behavior can help reduce the frustrations associated with their invasion. By sealing entry points, reducing attractants, and utilizing screens, you can reduce their impact. Remember, the moth invasion is temporary. And with these tips, you can enjoy the spring and summer without the constant flutter of unwanted guests.
When you find yourself with unwanted pests, be sure to contact us.