Meal Moths Mating

What are these moths?
Sat, Apr 11, 2009 at 8:32 AM
We live in Western Pennsylvania, and seem to have found moths which have eaten some of a wool rug we have in a storage area. We started finding them a couple of weeks ago on our walls and ceilings. I have killed about 6 of them. I did my spring cleaning and found some damage on the edge of a wool rug. I am assuming these are the culprits, but I can’t find these on the web to id them.
Western Pa

Meal Moths Mating
Meal Moths Mating

Dear Moth,
These are mating Meal Moths and they would be feeding on your stored grain products, not your wool rugs. Generally when we get photos of Pantry Moths, it is the smaller Indian Meal Moth, Plodia interpunctella, but your moths are the Meal Moth, Pyralis farinalis. It has a worldwide distribution. According to our Audubon Guide, the “Caterpillar eats grains, meal, bran, husks, straw, and moist stored hay. … Cleanliness and frequent emptying of storage bins are the best means of controlling this insect. Its caterpillars spin tubular webs amond food, eating from an open end.” We would advise that you check the pantry to see if you have an infestation in the oatmeal or other likely food source.

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