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Common Clothes Moth (Tineola bisselliella)

The common clothes moth is a member of the family of fungus moths. The larvae are a massive pest to fabrics and foodstuffs, most notably wool but also other natural and synthetic fibers.

Common Clothes Moth

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Scientific Classification


Description and Identification

Caterpillar

They are white, with the number of instars varying from specimen to specimen. Some have 5 instars, while others may go through as many as 45.

Common Clothes Moth Larvae

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Pupa

Pupation occurs inside a cocoon for 10-50 days.

Adult Moth

Sexual Dimorphism: Present but not prominent.

Color and Appearance

Forewings: When the wings are opened, they are a pale ocherous yellow. This color remains visible when the wings are closed.

Hindwings: When the wings are opened, they are grey-ish white. When the wings are closed, the colors and patterns remain the same.

Average wingspan: 0.9-1.6 cm

Flight pattern: Erratic

Season: Spring

Tineola bisselliella

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Egg

Eggs are laid in clusters between 30 and 200 that adhere to surfaces with a gelatin-like glue.

Quick Facts

Other NamesWebbing clothes moth, clothing moth
DistributionWestern Palearctic
HabitatDim or dark areas, such as attics, basements, and closets
Lifespan of Adults15-30 days
Host PlantsCotton, furs, linen, silk, and wool fabrics
Adult DietDoes not feed

Did You Know

  • Swedish entomologist Arvid David Hummel first described this species in 1823.
Common Clothes Moth Image

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Webbing Clothes Moth

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Common Clothes Moth Picture

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