[Tweeters] Bird seed with critters

Gary Bletsch garybletsch at yahoo.com
Wed Oct 31 17:20:33 PDT 2018

Dear Charles and Tweeters,
Thanks to Charles, that was very interesting! 
Indian Meal Moths--who knew! I wonder if those were the nasty critters that used to infest the starchy foodstuffs which I would purchase when I lived in the Middle East. They were present even in some pre-packaged, Western-style breakfast cereals! One time, as I was eating my morning bowl of cereal, I kept thinking there was something wrong with my eyes, because my cereal seemed to be writhing in the bowl. Then I noticed the larvae. I quickly decided to switch my routine to pita bread and hummus for breakfast, at that point.
On a more NW topic, I will add that I was disappointed in a recent purchase of "No-Waste" bird seed. Luckily, I bought only a five-pound sack. The seed has been hulled. It looks good enough to eat. I am sure that a few tens of millions of people on this planet would love to have it for supper. However, in our wet climate, this bird seed quickly turns into a sodden mass of glop, which then hardens into a material with the consistency of sheet-rock. Instead of "no-waste," it turned out more like "mostly-waste." I had almost no birds at my feeder during the time when I was offering it.
As soon as I stopped putting it out, and went back to black-oil sunflower seed, I had a Harris's Sparrow, a White-throated Sparrow, and, just now, a flock of 50 Red-winged Blackbirds at my feeders. The latter marked the first occurrence this fall of the usual horde of blackbirds that visit my place every year. One of these days, maybe a Rusty will come with them.
Yours truly,
Gary Bletsch

From: Charles Easterberg <easterbg at uw.edu>
To: Byers <byers345 at comcast.net>; "tweeters at u.washington.edu" <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2018 8:29 AM
Subject: Re: [Tweeters] Bird seed with critters

#yiv7075440184 #yiv7075440184 -- P {margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;}#yiv7075440184 Hi all.  Moths lay their eggs in the seeds during the summer; then the eggs hatch and larvae feed on the seed meats but out of our sight.  They then gnaw their way out of the shells and become visible; you may first detect them crawling up your walls trying to get to the ceiling, the warmest place in the room, to pupate, especially if you move the sack from a cold garage to a warm room.  Then, if the seeds are not frozen for a week or two to kill the eggs and larvae, they will spin cocoons and morph into --horrors---Indian meal moths, which will then go for our foods stored in cabinets and pantries. this pest eats almost anything starchy and can be a recurring nightmare if it gets a foothold;very hard to get rid of.  I threw out 25% of a cousin's foods once because so much of her cabinet was infested; moths all over the place. 
From: Tweeters <tweeters-bounces at mailman11.u.washington.edu> on behalf of Byers <byers345 at comcast.net>
Sent: Monday, October 29, 2018 4:16:19 PM
To: tweeters at u.washington.edu
Subject: [Tweeters] Bird seed with critters #yiv7075440184 #yiv7075440184 _filtered #yiv7075440184 {font-family:Calibri;}#yiv7075440184 p.yiv7075440184x_MsoNormal, #yiv7075440184 li.yiv7075440184x_MsoNormal, #yiv7075440184 div.yiv7075440184x_MsoNormal {margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;font-size:11.0pt;}#yiv7075440184 a:x_link, #yiv7075440184 span.yiv7075440184x_MsoHyperlink {color:blue;text-decoration:underline;}#yiv7075440184 a:x_visited, #yiv7075440184 span.yiv7075440184x_MsoHyperlinkFollowed {color:purple;text-decoration:underline;}#yiv7075440184 span.yiv7075440184x_EmailStyle17 {color:windowtext;}#yiv7075440184 .yiv7075440184x_MsoChpDefault {} _filtered #yiv7075440184 {margin:1.0in 1.0in 1.0in 1.0in;}#yiv7075440184 div.yiv7075440184x_WordSection1 {}#yiv7075440184 Hi Tweeters,                In response to Greg’s question about bird seed with worms in it, I have encountered this too.  The worms may be a treat for the birds, but it does make you wonder how old the seed is. Charlotte Byers, Edmonds_______________________________________________
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