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Do I have a potential pest problem?


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I was getting a uniform out to sell tonight and I notice that it had several small white dots probably no larger than 1 mm in size in a few areas on the jacket. Then I remembered a thread from yesterday about carpet beetles. I have several uniforms hanging from a rafter in my basement and looked through them and noticed more of these little white dots on those as well. The good thing is I did not notice any holes or active larvae on any of them. Just as a precaution I'm going to store these in the freezer overnight. Any ideas as to whether or not these are eggs from some cloth loving pest?

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This crowd has gone deadly silent, a Cinderella story outta nowhere. Former greenskeeper and now about to become the masters champion....Carl Spackler

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Sounds like mold

Actively collecting:

13th USAAF uniforms and groups/medal groups!

307th BG, 5th BG, 11th BG, 42nd BG

Also looking for:

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Any Pacific Army Air Force Groups to 5th, 7th, 10th, 14th, 20th AAF

Collecting CBI and ATC Pacific Army Air Force groups

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Sounds like mold

 

It's definitely not mold. It looks like some kind of round, circular egg. They brush off very easily.

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This crowd has gone deadly silent, a Cinderella story outta nowhere. Former greenskeeper and now about to become the masters champion....Carl Spackler

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I'm not sure what they are but as a precaution I would get some moth traps and hang a few around. You can buy them on E Bay. Make sure you get the ones that attract clothes moths.

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Yea i guess i didnt read the part about it brushing off easy - I would go with some type of egg then. Sorry about that!

 

This is the second time I have seen someone with a pest problem this week....maybe I should have a look-see through my things!

Actively collecting:

13th USAAF uniforms and groups/medal groups!

307th BG, 5th BG, 11th BG, 42nd BG

Also looking for:

WWII Far East Air Force uniforms/groups!

Any Pacific Army Air Force Groups to 5th, 7th, 10th, 14th, 20th AAF

Collecting CBI and ATC Pacific Army Air Force groups

donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifmsg-24355-0-77312200-1449362814.gif

 

USMF's custom photo resize tool:http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/229816-custom-resize-tool-exclusively-for-the-usmf/




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I believe I have found the culprit...clothes moths! After checking the uniforms I put in the freezer last night I found a dead frozen moth on top of the pile that very closely matches this photo. I don't see any damage so it looks like I may have caught it just in time.

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This crowd has gone deadly silent, a Cinderella story outta nowhere. Former greenskeeper and now about to become the masters champion....Carl Spackler

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BASEMENT AND ATTIC ARE THE 2 WORST PLACES TO HAND/STORE CLOTH, LEATHER, PAPER.

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I would check everything you have that could possibly have come into contact with the moths. Make sure you thoroughly check your unforms, under the collar, inside pockets, any folds, etc.

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I my collection on the highest floor of my house, but it isnt the attic do you think i would be OK, because from as far as i can tell there is nothing living in the uniforms.

 

-Dave

Collecting WWI 26th Division Machine Gun and Infantry related Helmets, Equipment, Groupings, Photos and Dog Tags!


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There is no easy way to be protected from the insidiousness of insects. One day everything looks fine, the next you life up a pocket flap and find it is all eaten underneath. There are a lot of things you can do to help prevent it though.

 

The very best thing you can do is purchase moth pheromone traps. They will tell you if there is an infestation. If so you basically have to nuke the house with chemicals. And keep in mind that cedar does nothing to moths - except form a tight fit in a chest or closet to keep them out.

 

If you found a moth, and suspect the white spots are eggs or whatever, freezing it for a few days is not necessarily going to take care of the problem. Most freezers do not go down low enough to make sure. Plus, if they are in the room, they are in the house. and that means by next week they will be back.

 

The yellow no pest strips are great for killing off bugs. In theory, testing shows they don't really pose much of a hazard unless you eat them or sleep directly under them for years. In a closed collection room or basement or whatever they are pretty helpful.

 

try looking at the insects limited site.

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  • 7 months later...

So great - now im paranoid....

 

So how often do you need to check things?

 

Do you look in pockets and under collars?

 

How much checking on things, is too much checking?

Actively collecting:

13th USAAF uniforms and groups/medal groups!

307th BG, 5th BG, 11th BG, 42nd BG

Also looking for:

WWII Far East Air Force uniforms/groups!

Any Pacific Army Air Force Groups to 5th, 7th, 10th, 14th, 20th AAF

Collecting CBI and ATC Pacific Army Air Force groups

donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifmsg-24355-0-77312200-1449362814.gif

 

USMF's custom photo resize tool:http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/229816-custom-resize-tool-exclusively-for-the-usmf/




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So great - now im paranoid....

 

So how often do you need to check things?

 

Do you look in pockets and under collars?

 

How much checking on things, is too much checking?

 

I have a degree in museum preservation and archival techniques and I am primarily a uniform collector, so carpet beetles and clothing moths are my number one concern. Yes you will find them, yes it is a constant battle, no matter how thoroughly you clean/inspect your collection. To answer your questions,

 

1) I have around 500 uniforms in my collection and I do bi-annually inspection of every piece of cloth in my collection. By time I am done, it is usually time to start over!

2) I turn every artifact inside out, inspect under the collars, in sleeves, pockets - everywhere. the clothing moths and carpet beetles lay their eggs in dark areas that have little air flow. It is this larvae, not the adult beetle/moth that will eat your items. Depending on what I am cleaning, I use either an clean cloth that is barely damp with bottled water or Kirby vacuum with a clothing attachment that I can adjust the suction down on, so not to damage the clothing. and remove any built up lint/dust. I also wear archival gloves now when handling my uniforms because the oils on your skin can be food for the larvae.

3) the preservation of your items should not be seen as a chore. We, as collectors, must have an understanding that the artifacts' preservation is our duty, and responsibility and we should not take this lightly. Every time you pull an item out to look at it, you should inspect it, and address any concerns, whether it be mold, mildew, insects, dirt. There is no such thing as too much checking; after all, you paid for the item and it is your investment

Cpl James A Paris, USMC
Stinger Missile Gunner
H&S Co. Support Bn MCRDSD 2002-2003

MarDet Ft Bliss, TX 2003
2nd Plt 1st Stinger Btry, Okinawa 2003-2004
2nd Plt A Btry 3rd LAAD BN Camp Pendleton, CA 2004-2006

Please visit my blog: http://ourcountrysheroes.blogspot.com/

 

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