Home Care

7 Helpful Tips for Getting Rid of Gamu-Gamo

They're said to herald the end of the dry season.

Photography: Shuttestock

Updated as of July 19, 2023

You may have noticed gamu-gamo flying around your outdoor lamps at dusk or even sneaking into your home and crawling all over the place. The swarming is said to signal the end of summer; and there's a bit of truth in that, as experts say that while this event (also known as "synchronized flight") happens in different times of the year, its peak happens just before the wet season begins.

Having gamu-gamo, however, may also be a sign that your home has a termite infestation. It often starts with signs that one tends to miss—like mud tunnels, or dust mounds, or gamu-gamo swarms. It's a must to deal with this issue immediately, but if you wish to first get rid of winged termites, you can try the following tips:

Also Read: Ways to Keep Snakes Away from Home and Yard

How to deal with gamu-gamo

1. Have thick curtains to cover your windows and glass doors 

Gamu-gamo are attracted to light, which is why it's recommended to close your curtains or blinds at night, to make your home seem less inviting to them. You can buy blackout curtains from Lazada.

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2. Do the lightbulb-and-mirror trick

Turn on a lightbulb and place a bowl of water directly under it, with six to 10 inches of space in between. The water will reflect the light causing the gamu-gamo to fly to the bowl of water, trapping them. Stock up on LED lightbulbs on Lazada.

3. Soak a piece of cardboard with water and pesticides

Apart from light, gamu-gamo are attracted to cellulose and humidity. Cellulose is present in cardboard, so that's why adding water to it can lure them in. As gamu-gamo chew on cardboard, adding pesticide to it can help lessen their numbers. Just make sure to place it away from children and pets. Try an all-natural insecticide spray such as this one from Theodore's, available on Lazada.

4. Use an electric insect killer

A simple solution: Buy an electric insect killer. There are a lot of options online, such as this one from Lazada, depending on where you plan to put it. Strategically place them in areas of the rooms where they usually stay to have a higher chance of eliminating the insects.

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5. Get to the root of the problem

As mentioned, gamu-gamo may be a sign of termites. Check your home for swollen bulges in wooden walls or columns, unexplained mounds of dust, and a strong scent of mold or mildew, among others. You can see if your home is positive for other signs here. If so, then it may be time to call in an expert.

6. Clean the areas where they frequent

Start your battle against gamu-gamo by decluttering and organizing your home. Moths are attracted to dark, undisturbed places where they can lay eggs and feed on natural fibers. Therefore, you need to regularly go through your closets, storage areas, and drawers. Get rid of items you no longer need and organize the rest to ensure adequate ventilation.

In addition, vacuum the room regularly to eliminate gamu-gamo larvae, eggs, and adults (here's a handheld option available on Lazada). Pay special attention to carpets, rugs, upholstered furniture, and curtains, because these areas are hotspots for moth activity. After vacuuming, dispose of the vacuum bag or clean the canister thoroughly to prevent reinfestation.

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7. Use aroma as a weapon

Natural repellents like cedar chips, lavender sachets (available on Lazada), or dried lemon peels in your closets and drawers can repel moths while leaving your clothes smelling pleasantly fresh. You can also make a DIY gamu-gamo-repellent spray using essential oils like lavender or peppermint. Simply mix a few drops with water and spray it on fabrics, carpets, and rugs. Grab a bottle of peppermint essential oil from Human Nature on Lazada.

When you're dealing with insects like gamu-gamo, make yourself familiar with how they reproduce, types of areas they favor, and the things they tend to avoid, among others. More importantly, you need to determine which parts or aspects of your home tend to attract these so when you implement the tips above, you'll have a lower chance of encountering a lot of gamu-gamo in the future. If you're having a hard time eradicating them despite doing all the tips above, consider calling in a professional to do the rest of the work for you.

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Frequently Asked Questions on Getting Rid of Gamu-Gamo

Are gamu-gamo harmful to humans?

No, gamu-gamo moths are generally harmless to humans. They do not bite or sting. However, their larvae can cause damage to natural fibers, such as clothes and fabrics, if left unchecked.

Why do gamu-gamo infestations occur?

Gamu-gamo infestations occur when moths find suitable environments to lay their eggs and thrive. Factors like dark and undisturbed areas, the presence of natural fibers, and lack of proper maintenance can attract gamu-gamo into your home.

Are chemical pesticides necessary to eliminate gamu-gamo?

In most cases, chemical pesticides are not necessary to eliminate gamu-gamo. However, in severe infestations, consulting a professional pest control service may be recommended.

Can gamu-gamo survive in cold temperatures?

Gamu-gamo moths prefer warmer temperatures but can still survive in colder environments, albeit in a less active state. Maintaining a consistent temperature and humidity level in your home can help deter gamu-gamo infestations.

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How long does it take to get rid of gamu-gamo?

The timeline for eliminating gamu-gamo can vary depending on the severity of the infestation and the effectiveness of the preventive measures implemented.

* * *

Have you recently spruced up your room or renovated your home? We'd definitely love to see the result! Send clear photos (with your full name, city address, and accompanying kuwento) to [email protected] with the subject "DIY Makeover" and we may just feature your DIY project!

This article originally appeared in a previous issue of Real Living magazine. With reports from Nica Jose.

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