NewsCovering Colorado


Miller moths by the masses, their benefits and how long they'll stay

Posted at 12:45 AM, May 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-18 16:25:27-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — Your home or car may be host to some uninvited guests right now. Perhaps you've swatted a few of those pesky miller moths already as they invade Colorado once again looking for food.

The miller moths can get into the smallest of cracks, and despite many people having all their windows and doors closed, the moths are still finding their way inside homes.

Carrie York is one of the owners at the May Natural History Museum, which is a local bug museum. She said miller moths travel from the east, and migrate to the mountains to feed on flowers and nectar in the summer.

“Anywhere near the mountains is where you're going to really see them and that's where we all live,” said York.

The infestation happens every year in May and June, but York considers this season a mild infestation year. The moths are mature adults from army cutworms making their migration. While these moths are a nuisance, they don't cause any harm.

“They don't have claws or teeth or stinger. There's no way they're going to hurt you. So they're really harmless,” said York. “It’s just part of nature. You kind of have to roll with it. They are definitely not attacking you even though it feels like they're dive bombing you at times,” said York.

York said the migration will only last a couple weeks, but it's still annoying for many Colorado residents like Kathy Reimer.

“I just know that there's a lot of them in my house,” said Reimer. “They come in through my bathroom window. I don't know how they get through the screen but they do. and my cats love them. and that's their new play toy.”

A few things York says you can do:

  • Keep your outside lights off at night because moths are attracted to light, close your curtains at night
  • Take a clear bowl with some soapy water in it, put a light above, and once the moths have soap on their wings, they won't be able to fly
  • Use moth traps or repellent

“Other than that, there's not much you can do,” said York.
While these moths are searching for food, they're also food themselves for other animals like birds, bats, and bears.

The May Natural History Museum has been in Colorado Springs for more than 70 years. Their fifth generation runs the museum. York’s great grandfather has collected and displayed more than 7,000 tropical insects. York said the museum features some of the rarest insects in the world. The museum is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day until October. Admission is $12 for adults and $9 for kids.

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