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Parrots/Moths coming from a Quaker parrot

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Question
My mother in law lives with me and my husband and she owns a Quaker parrot. In the past year we have been getting little moths all around the house that seem to be coming from the parrots cage. We have bathed the parrot, cleaned his cage and even moved to a new house! But we still seem to be getting these little flying insects that look just like moths....but unlike no other moth I've ever seen! They are small, two toned gray, and like to get into our food pantry. Ive never even seen a moth like this in anyone elses house, or anywhere else for that matter. Also, after time passes, it seems like they lay larvae that resembles little worms! We are clean people who never leave food out or anything that could be attracting these insects. Please please tell me something we can do to remedy this issue with the bird! It's driving me crazy and my mother in law will NEVER be willing to get rid of her bird!

Answer
-- Eeek!  Stop thinking it's from your bird.  Poor birdy doesn't care for these common pests either.  We ALL have them.  Especially if you're feeding birdy seeds.  Anything with grains will do it too.

 The sure fire 'cure' is to store ALL bird food (that's not fresh food) in the freezer for two days to kill any larvae or early moths.  Then store the food in the fridge for the summer

These are called flour moths; Indian meal moths; Mediterranean Flour Moth and a host of different names.

 I store all bird food, including pellets, in airtight zip top bags and come early spring it all goes into a freezer section until use.  

Constant vacuuming, not just the floor, but edges, corners, along the upper edges of the walls and inside all your cabinets, as well as the edges under them is tedious, but helpful.  

These moths arenít just feeding in seed, but will enjoy your flour, pasta, rice - even cereal and quite a few other packaged items you think they canít get into.  Chances are they are in there and you don't know it.  One way to tell is to slowly open these things and carefully look for what appears to be cobwebbing.  Many people don't pay any attention to this, thinking it's just dust or something.  Nope, it's from those annoying moths laying egg sacs.

There are pheromone products on the market that attract and eliminate the male moths.  Without them, the females soon die off without reproducing.

 These DO work!!  You can find for them in pet stores (usually at a higher price) or in garden supply stores like OSH and Lowes where you'll get two in a package for around $5-7.00

  
Oh and by the way, the moths and the larvae are harmless.  You have no idea of the millions of people and animals that end up eating them and never even know it.  High up on the 'ewww' factor right?

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Rev. Dr. S.August Abbott

Expertise

Certified Avian Specialist; Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council member; Own animal rescue org; National Wildlife habitat #66378; bird care, nutrition & behavior consultant; International Assoc. of Animal Behavior Consultants Associate; National Wildlife Federation Leaders Club member; published bird care, info and behavior articles and guides. Ongoing education in exotic bird behavior and nutrition I can answer behavioral, nutritional, environmental, characteristic/personality questions as well as general health and health care. No animal emergency can ever be addressed on the internet. We cannot see your animal, perform an examination, provide necessary care or medication. Please value your companion for the priceless, living creature they are; not for what you might have paid for them.

Experience

Certified Avian Specialist. For more than 30 years I've worked with veterinarians, protective facilities, nature centers, preserves and on my own in providing care and education with regard to multiple animal species, including raptors (hawks, kestrals, owls, etc) and marsupials. In recent years I've focused on parrots, usually rescued from abusive or less than ideal situations and helping educate owners as to proper care. Expert in behavior studies and modification of problem behavior.

Organizations
4AnimalCare is the organization I run as an animal ministry; World Wildlife Association, Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, National Wildlife Federation Leaders Club and more

Publications
Bird Talk Magazine articles about rescued and problem macaws.

Education/Credentials
Doctorate, Ordained Minister

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