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‘Harmless’ Miller moths return to Colorado: How to get your home ready

Insecticides do very little to keep them away, and if you don’t want Miller moths in the house, check for any entry points and seal up holes and keep doors and windows shut.
miller moths
Posted at 3:43 PM, May 28, 2024

DENVER — While they can be a nuisance, flying into cars, homes and landing in cracks and crevices, Miller moths are harmless and actually serve a role in the ecosystem.

Miller moths migrate to the Front Range every year, typically through May and June. They originally got the name “Miller” because of the dusty, white residue they can leave behind.

That residue can resemble the flour a miller might see on their hands.

The moths migrate west each year from the eastern plains of Colorado to the mountains during the spring, in search of cooler weather and blooming flowers.

Urban areas, like Denver, tend to see more moths during drier winters and late freezes, which fortunately this year, isn’t necessarily the case.

Lisa Mason, a horticulture Specialist and Entomologist at the Colorado State University Extension in Arapahoe County said the moths “are completely harmless. They cannot bite or sting.” She adds,

“They do serve a role in the ecosystem. They pollinate flowers and are food for other organisms”.

Miller moths, while they are big, brown, and at times jarring to encounter, do not eat clothes and will not hurt pets if they are consumed.

miller moths

Local News

What you need to know about the miller moth migration as it hits the Front Range

Stephanie Butzer
8:09 PM, May 12, 2023

Insecticides do very little to keep them away, and if you don’t want Miller moths in the house, check for any entry points and seal up holes, and keep doors and windows shut.

The moths are also attracted to the light, so turn off the porch lights if they congregate there.

There are no magic tricks to make Miller moths disappear and you can set a trap by suspending a light bulb over a bucket partially filled with soapy water.

'Jingling keys or making similar noises can disturb many of the moths in the home causing them to seek shelter and can sometimes dramatically speed the capture rate when using the soapy water trap,' according to CSU's website.

The suggestion is, to not kill them. Squishing or swatting the moths may leave a brown fluid that can stain walls and carpets. If they do come into your home, just try to shoo them out the door.

The majority of Miller Moths will make their way to the mountains through the summertime.

‘Harmless’ Miller moths return to Colorado: How to get your home ready




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