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Please don't remind me that I'm poor; I'm having too much fun pretending I'm simply "living green" like everyone else these days.


Saturday, July 31, 2010

Bugs in the batting

I stopped working on the machine yesterday and started cleaning like a mad woman. The dust and bugs in my studio had to go!

There has been an explosion of bug activity in this area because of the heat and humidity.  Apparently, according to the TV news, the conditions are favorable for a bug population explosion.  My daughter has had lots of brown recluse spiders in her house and has put out stuff to kill them.   I didn't think bugs were a problem for me until yesterday. 

I happened to pick up a wool batting scrap that had fallen onto the floor.  I saw a couple of dark spots in it and wondered.... what the heck is that? 

Barely noticeable bugs in the batting

I looked over the batting and found more dark spots.   Barely noticeable except it's a light cream color wool batting.  The dark spot is actually inside the batting.  At first I thought it was a bit of dirt or something left in when it was made.

Bug down inside the batting

I got out a pair of scissors to cut out the offending dark spots.  What did I discover?  Bugs and egg sacks!

Batting cut away to reveal the bug and egg sack

The darned things look like a type of black beetle and the egg sacks are brown. 

Batting cut away to reveal the bug

I looked at every batting package I have stored under my quilting machine.  There were bugs in only the wool batting.  Nothing in any of the other ones.  The plastic package did have air holes so the bugs could have gotten in through those.

Bug sack inside the unopened package of wool batting

I threw away 6 packages of wool batting.  Three king, 2 queen, and 1 twin sized.  I hated throwing money away like that but it had to be done.  No way do I want a bug haven in my house!  I did call Quilter's Dream just to check to see if there had been any complaints.  They were very concerned but there have not been any complaints.  I have also had the wool batting for over a year.  The bugs could have come from anywhere. 

I hate creepy crawlies!  Thinking about them make my skin cringe.  So, instead of finishing a quilt, I cleaned and cleaned.  I will check carefully every batting before using it until all the batting has been used.  I don't plan on storing batting anymore.  It's easier to just order as needed because there are so many types these days. 

If anyone reading this post has any older packages of Quilter's Dream wool batting please check it before using it.  If you do find bugs in your batting, please give Quilter's Dream a courtesy call so they know. 


Dora, the Quilter said...

Oh, I am so sorry about the bugs and the consequent deletion of the batts.
I don't know if this will help you, but for years I've used a great electronic pest control that I purchased at Costco. They no longer carry them, but for friends I've picked up smaller ones (more modern, cover less space) from Target (and hardware stores).
In a bad "bug-year" insects sometimes still wander into our home, but never as many as will wander in if the devices are turned off or unplugged.
We have no pets, but I think there may be a warning that dogs and cats can be irritated by the electronic sounds.
I'm so sorry you've had this unpleasant challenge.
(I still do pick up moth balls from the Dollar Store, and I use those in my storage building. Again, not great around pets--but they do deter more pests than just the six or eight legged kind.)

lw said...

I don't think I'd have tossed the batting, I think I'd have put into the dryer at the highest heat you have with a wet (and wrung out) dish towel. It wouldn't shrink, but the hot steam from the towel would kill the insects. Then I'd remove the dead bug sections and patch in clean batting.

Unless I thought it was brown recluse spiders, and then I'd have burnt the batting in a metal garbage can on cement. Shudder!!!

Anita Estes said...

Dora, I looked into one of those electronic things. I have a little furkid and didn't want to hurt his ears. He is just about 2 pounds soaking wet. He would probably attack the device trying to stop the sounds.

lw, there were too many bugs in the batting for me cut them all out. Bugs give me the willies. I just want them gone! Tossing was the next best thing to burning since we aren't allowed to burn stuff in the city limits. I live by a firehouse and I'm sure they would notice me burning something.

I won't be ordering large numbers of batting anymore so it shouldn't be a problem in the future. I only order batting as needed these days.

kathi said...

YIKES!!!! and yes i am ITCHING right now. BUGS NO BUGS. i HATE the fact that you had to trash the QUILTERS DREAM WOOL of ALL THINGS. not CHEAP. actually a PRICEY investment. HATES IT. my precious. BUt. no option. NOW what next? BUGS are my SECOND worse feAR. MICE. WE HAVE MICE in the garage. a NOT attached garage... WE ALSO have TWO CATS in the house. i HOPE the mouse units SMELL the CAT units and RUN LIKE HADES. as "mice in the BIG ROLL OF HOBBS 80/20" is NOT something i WANT to deal with. "throw away' an 150 buck investment. NOPE. GOOO KITTIES. i hope.

SO SORRY. bugs. NOT good. AND YES, no OPTION if you are using it for customers. TOSS IT. so SAD. this you did NOT need.

Anita Estes said...

Hi Kathi,

I don't know which I hate worse, bugs or mice. Both are horrible pests. The tv news did say we might also have a population explosion of mice too because mice eat bugs. More bugs mean more mice. I got decon packets put out already.

ncsteel said...

Hi did you find out what the name of the insects are, I have had exact bugs in mt wool blanketing in NSW Australia.

Anita Estes said...

Hi Eileen, no, I never did figure out what kind of bugs they were. Some type of hardshelled bug is all I know. No one else seemed to have the bug problem so I kind of figured it was only me with those critters. If you find out would you please let me know?