The Seraphim

Moth Mania: its cause and treatment

Lacey Robertson, Staff Writer

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Lacey Robertson
Senior Courtney Rivard searches for a moth that’s flying under the desks during Mr. N’s math class.


The campus has been infested with moths and other creatures during the month of September, and students and faculty alike are searching for a solution.

A senior girl was met with a flutter of the flying insects–13 moths to be exact–at precisely 8:15 a.m. recently in the bathroom in the 700 building, but she’s not alone in this experience around NDP.

Moths have been making their home inside the NDP community, especially in the bathrooms and in the 800 building and have been a nuisance to teachers and students.

Dead moths gather in the sink of the 700 building bathroom.

“There are currently 37 moths and counting in room 801. I heard that a math teacher had to stop her lesson during A period and turned off all the lights and opened the door to try to make them leave,” said senior Tayler Nisser.

According to Lindsey Reiser’s article on, the moth influx in Arizona during this time of year is due to the monsoon season that brings moisture into the air. But, the moths should be left alone because they serve an important ecological role as prey for many animals.

Faculty and maintenance staff are looking for a way to treat the infestation at NDP to appease unhappy students and teachers.

“We brought in more bats,” joked Director of Operations Harry Ertter.

There has been an increase in the bat population on campus, although it is not intentional.

According to Professor of Animal Evolution David Jacobs’ article on The Conversation’s website, moths are easy prey for bats because their echolocation allows them to detect the moths in complete darkness.

The real solution to the moths is to wait for the monsoon season to end, and to use various forms of repellent to keep them away from classrooms, restrooms, and other student gathering areas instead of exterminating them.

“We’re treating the areas with repellent powder and cedar planks,” said Ertter. “We were told it’s a seasonal thing because of the monsoons and the moisture and hot air they bring.”

After these steps are taken, it really is just a matter of time before the moths make their exit.

“I wish I knew how long [it would take], but I think it will be about a month, which is when it gets cooler outside,” said Ertter.

Many staff members share students’ negative feelings about the moths, but some feel that the insects are not as significant of a problem as people around NDP are making it out to be.

Math instructor Wilhelm Nieweglowski, who has a classroom in the infamously moth-infested 800 building, does not seem too bothered by the intruders.

“It’s annoying, but it’s not a serious problem,” said Nieweglowski. “Since we have survived [the moths] for such a long time, we will be fine if we don’t intervene.”

He added, “I don’t like bugs but I don’t have a phobia. I don’t have an opinion [on moths].”

This nonchalant attitude towards the moths is in the minority on campus, and many students are finding that the moths are becoming a nuisance during class.

In these next couple of weeks, members of the NDP community will simply just have to deal with moths flying around during Spanish lessons, anatomy labs, and APUSH lectures until they decide to fly away and make their homes somewhere other than a Catholic school.

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About the Contributor
Lacey Robertson, Writer

Lacey Robertson is a senior at NDP. She has played on the girls soccer team all four years of high school, and began playing lacrosse for the Saints her...

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Moth Mania: its cause and treatment