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BBC Three Counties Radio, 19th July 2012


BBC Three Counties RadioWe're also talking about this amazing report by pest control experts who say they are dealing with a record number of fabric eating moths across the three counties, if you've not had the problem you're thinking what's the fuss? These things can eat you out of house and home. One text says, and your very quick with texts, thank you. It says Rob, my carpets are being eaten by these maggot looking larvae, they stink like bad eggs when I pick them up. Any idea what they are and how do I get rid of them? These will be the little moth larvae things! That's what you've got! You've got an infestation! And I tell you what they will eat the carpet. A number of fabric eating moths are causing problems across Beds, Herts and Bucks, now experts say that the number of cases they're dealing with across the three counties has literally gone through the roof, there's loads of them! The moths will attack anything! I mean anything made out of material, clothes, curtains and carpets, even shag piles. Graham Warren is a moth expert at moth and home care company. Caraselle Direct. Graham, Very good afternoon to you!

Good afternoon to you sir! How are you?

I'm very well, but I tell you what though on the texts people are going dolally commenting on this. Where are all these moths coming from?

They are generally coming from Europe, there is no one particular reason why we are getting so many, we are in the second consecutive year of a moth pandemic. Partly it's global warming, partly its, at the moment, very warm and moist, and boy are we moist in the last few weeks here, damp conditions, and also the general theory is that most of use have more clothes than we've had before, we don't wear the same garments as often as we may have done in the past, and each garment does not get disturbed or shaken or taken out of the wardrobe so often, and you don't necessarily know you've got the problem until too late.

So you have to give your clothes a good airing?!

You do! Some grandmothers its how they used to treat things and some others have forgotten, and as much as anything its a learning curve, it's being ever vigilant to look out for the tell tale signs, which are the larvae, because it's the larvae as they hatch, its the little creatures that do all the damage, which explains why you get very small holes in your garments because they themselves are small, they need to eat to grow into fully grown moths. So when you close the doors of the wardrobe that's there absolutely prime breeding conditions, and now we've got moths more or less throughout the year, it used to be a couple of years ago, one or two seasons, now its more or less throughout the year.

And these are all immigrant moths, well that doesn't surprise me.

They are.

Have you seen a big number of cases/people come to you saying, I need help Graham, help now!

We are inundated, we're trying to carry out this fantastic service here because we've got people in tears, because moths eat natural garments and natural fibres, so all the things we like and cherish the most are the ultimate target for the moths. We've seen a huge increase, there's three types of moth the clothes moth, carpet moth and food moth, the carpet moth is growing as well but the clothes moth is by far the biggest issue.

So some of the basics here again Graham, apart from getting out a lovely jacket or dress from your wardrobe and seeing it's full of holes, how do you know if you've got a problem with moths?

Open the doors to the wardrobe thoroughly look inside and look for the larvae, you can have the larvae for up to two years and not know you've got it. They look like in terms of size shape and colour a small grain of white rice. That's the tell tale sign, as well as the obvious things like moths flying around in the room. The other really useful thing, that we've done here, we won an award for last year at the British invention show, we've created the Caraselle moth map, which you can have a look at, fill in your postcode give it a few seconds and a huge amount of information will be downloaded to show you, where you live, if you're in a high moth infestation area.

We're checking that as we speak.

If you are then we at Caraselle have all the different remedies to help with the problem.

All the services available. So how can you bring them under control? Because I've got some nice clothes obviously, you know Italian, and I've got some anti-moth devices, they're not moth balls, I got it from a very famous shop, and apparently you stick it in your wardrobe, just put it in there and it kills the moths.

Yes, well we have got a whole variety of different types of moth repellent. For every type of moth we have the answer for the three or four different types and also where the moth is found, sometimes it in wardrobes, sometimes its in cupboards an drawers, other times its under the sofa or the chairs because you don't move the heavy furniture.

Will they eat chairs?

They go for carpets, curtains and upholstery.

Dear lord.

That's different moths, so you've got to be aware that there are three types of moth, clothes moth, carpet moth, food moth.

One text says my carpets are being eaten by these maggot looking larvae, they stink like bad eggs when I pick them up.

Well then they need! We've got the answer for them.

What does it sound like, does that sound like a carpet moth?

That is a carpet moth.

Awh man alive!

Totally different to the clothes moth so you've gotta be ever diligent. If you've had them once the likely hood is you'll probably get them again. As long as your prepared for it and you get sound advice which we can offer, then in theory you can combat the problem.

Why don't people routinely use moth balls any more, thy had a certain attraction about them those moth balls, our grannies used to use them all the time.

They used to, they contain something called naphthalene which is no longer allowed to be sold. It was an extremely pungent smell and put a lot of people off, now technology has moved on.

How would you describe that smell? I remember opening drawers in my grandmothers and that very strong smell!

Lets say its a smell that you could never forget, it lingered did it not? It was a really strong almost unpleasant smell. Now the moth repellents not only work a lot better but they are infused with lavender so its a pleasant smell, plus lavender is also a natural moth repellent.

Graham, pleasure talking to you.

And you!

Graham Warren a moth expert at moth and home care company Caraselle Direct. I tell you what these things, if you get them, they'll eat your clothes, they'll eat your carpets and they'll eat your curtains!

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