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Pest Control/Pantry moths


Hi Dr. DeAngelis,
I had an exterminator spray my apt with special care to the kitchen and bathrooms 4 days ago.  Everything was cleaned and there is no food in the place.  However, I am still seeing several moths flying around.

How long does it usually take for pesticide treatment to work?  
Should I be be seeing any difference in number or behavior of the moths by now?
At what point do I consider another treatment?

Thank you very much for your answers.

Mary Greenfo

PS I live in Los Angeles, Callifornia


Unfortunately pesticides don't work well against meal/pantry moths. The best option is to locate the infested food and dispose of the "source". See for more suggestions. Post a follow up if you have questions.

Jack DeAngelis

Pest Control

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Jack DeAngelis


I can answer questions about the control of pest insects, spiders, mites and related arthropods. These household pests include termites, carpenter ants, powderpost beetles, nuisance ants, bed bugs, cockroaches, fleas, wasps, and many others. I can also answer questions about using pesticides and other pest control tools such as baits and traps.


I am a retired university extension entomologist. I've taught and conducted research in urban and agricultural entomology. I've published over 70 extension publications, 20 research publications and several books about insects.

Ph.D. in Entomology

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