No respite from moths

23:02, Jan 24 2013
Pat Veltkamp Smith
Columnist Pat Veltkamp Smith was Southland Times women's editor until 1997 and is a former president of the Southland Justices of the Peace Association.

What is it with these little suicidal moths we wake to find drowned in our bath, bedside water glass (ugh), shower base, pets' drinking bowls, asks Pat Veltkamp Smith in And Another Thing.

How have they flitted in so silently in the night to drown themselves before daybreak?

You wake to feel a faint touch on your skin but there's nothing there.

We are up with the play dealing with those big furry moths that blunder in when you have the light on and a window open, days camping between Christmas and New Year when once again we need to douse lights before opening anything.

At home we are never caught out with the big ones but seemingly can't avoid the nightly infestation of little ones.

No matter how carefully you have wiped down benches, there will be moths in the morning, stuck to a cake of soap in the laundry, dead in a forgotten coffee mug, drowned in toilet, bath or basin, lying prone on a damp facecloth.


There are loads of pest control devices advertised, people who will clear the house of spiders, or flies; firms setting up sensors to ward off marauding vermin, scare off cats, alarms for roaming dogs with sounds only they can hear; screens which let in air but keep insects out.

But what would keep these minuscule moths at bay?

I cannot imagine.

Maybe they're there unnoticed all day and come alive only at night to bat round a bit then throw themselves into that uncovered glass of water by the bed.

It is never just one floating in there - usually three or four - which explains why we have to turn on the light to have a drink, thoughtlessly left uncovered.


And to think we once moaned only about the size of those big bulb-bashing boyos, said we wouldn't care, only they were so big.

But small's as bad, worse maybe in a sneaky sort of way.

It is strange, this.

People in other parts of the world are dreading bombs. In Christchurch people have the fear of quakes at night.

Those little silvery moths are an irritant.

That's all.

But as there is nothing worse than an itch you can't scratch, so with a moth you can't catch.

It's like, tough.

The Southland Times