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BBC Radio Surrey, 23rd July 2012


BBC Three Counties RadioSouth west Surrey is being plagued by carpet munching moths! Can you believe it, apparently so.
Apparently the cold weather that we've been having over summer has encouraged people to keep their heating on which has caused the moths who live in our homes to proliferate, and munch their way through the contents of our wardrobes. What can be done about it? We will find out very shortly here on BBC Solent breakfast program, and I have some apocalyptic news for you, we're in the midst of a moth invasion. Experts say the cold ish weather this summer is partly to blame, for an epidemic, which is hitting Guildford and Godalming pretty hard. How do we know this? Because computer experts have developed a hi-tech map, showing the location and frequency of moth attacks. Graham Warren is a moth expert, Graham this does sound rather apocalyptic, what's going on?

Good Morning! I think that's a very apt description. Nick, last year and this year we have officially had a pandemic of moths across the country, but primarily in the south and particularly in the region that you're in. There is no particular reason for it, there's no one single reason. It's a combination of factors, it's partly global warming, it's partly the fact that most of us, if not all of us have more clothes than we ever had before.

There's a big food supply going!

Possibly, we tend not to wear the same garments as often so they don't get disturbed in the wardrobe. The moths thrive, and the larvae that hatch, it's them that make all the holes in the garments, when you close the doors of the wardrobe they thrive in dark and undisturbed places.

And are these specific sorts of moths?

Yes they are.

Or is it just all moths in general?


It's the cloth eating ones?

Well we've got three types of moth, they're all causing different problems. The most common and prevalent one is the clothes moth, and then we have a carpet moth, there's more people having carpet moths this year than we've ever seen before, and then there's the food moth, which tends to go for cereals and rice and flour. The clothes moth is the most common one.

And it's the residents of south west Surrey that are among the most moth eaten in the country?

Sadly, this is true, and moths only go for the things that we like the most which are natural fibres, the cottons and the silks, and all the things that we treasure the most.

So your never going to get a moth problem in Primark for instance?


What can be done about all this, because I imagine that, well I'll give you an example, I was out in the garden yesterday looking at the amount of creepy crawlies that are currently eating my roses to bits, the caterpillars are eating all the leaves, I've got red fly and green fly and I thought, should I take steps to get rid of them, or should I just leave them because they're a natural part of the ecosystem. I imagine that moths are a natural part of the ecosystem and that birds rather like them.

Well moths are solitary they come generally on their own, they don't swarm like wasps and bees etc. They tend to be in the house, and as I said they thrive on dark and undisturbed places. I'm not aware that they are eaten by other creatures, but there are two types of moth in all the different types of moth that we have that are eating most of the garments, and we've got a whole range on our website of Caraselle Direct whereby we can offer assistance and help for the different remedies for the different types of moth that you may have.

I see so unless you running an aviary inside your house, you might want chemical assistance of some description, to help you with the problem.

Well chemicals is the ultimate degree. We're not there, we're on things that are non-toxic and non-carcinogenic, so easy to use with children and pets etc. But chemicals would be the full sort of fumigation thing, we're not into that.

Sorry to interrupt but I've just looked at the time, I was enjoying our conversation so much I didn't realise we've only got ten seconds left, so I best go. Graham, good to speak to you, Thank You very much. Graham Warren, a moth expert.

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