Pantry moths are common pests of flour, cereals and many other stored foodstuffs. They thrive in warm, humid conditions. Trichogramma wasps are able to attack the egg stage thereby breaking the life cycle. They are a great way to reduce pantry moth infestations without resorting to chemicals. Trichogramma are incredibly small and very difficult to see without the aid of a microscope.
When to release
Release Trichogramma wasps at the first hint of pantry moth activity. These tiny wasps are able to seek out pantry moth eggs into which they deposit their own eggs. Monthly releases of Trichogramma are recommended until there is no further evidence of pantry moth activity.
How many to release
Release rates should vary with the amount of food and level of pantry moth activity. As a guide release one cup of Trichogramma wasps for each 1-2 square metres of cupboard shelf space.
Regular releases (every 2-4 weeks) during periods of elevated moth activity may be necessary.
How to release
Trichogramma wasps are supplied as a pack of 5 paper cups containing a total of 12,000 wasps. We send them as parasitised eggs and they should emerge as adult wasps within a day or two after arrival. Simply remove the lid to allow wasps to emerge. If ants are active it is recommended that wasps are protected in a water moat (as simple as placing in a cup on a saucer that is filled with water). This is to stop ants from attacking the parasitised eggs before they are able to hatch.
We also supply Trichogramma as an A4 sheet containing 60 perforated cells, each of which holds a nominal 1,000 parasitoid wasps (total 60,000 wasps per sheet. This option may be suitable for larger infestations and commercial operations.
Ensure your cereals and grains are stored in airtight containers. Avoid storing these foods for lengthy periods in your cupboards. Clean out food storage areas thoroughly, wipe shelves with a damp cloth and vacuum crevices to remove any food residue. Individual storage containers can be placed into a freezer for 3-4 days to kill pantry moths that may have taken up residence within.
Many chemical products are highly toxic to Trichogramma wasps. We strongly suggest that you avoid pesticides in and around your foodstuffs.