The National History Museum is trying to confuse male moths into believing that other male moths are female in an attempt to stop them reproducing.
The Telegraph is reporting that the museum located in Kensington, London, is trying to trick male moths into mating with other each other so they stop reproducing and damaging the ancient art exhibits. The museum has had a moth infestation for four years and cannot use ordinary chemicals to get rid of the moths.
Speaking to the Telegraph Armando Mendex, quarantine facility manager at the museum, who is heading the project said,
“It’s called the Pheromone Destruction System and in simplistic terms, it makes male moths attracted to other male moths
“They only live for a couple of weeks and during that time there is only a small window in which they can reproduce. If they spend this unknowingly attempting to attract and fertilise male moths, then it reduces the offspring we are up against.”
Using the Pheromone Destruction System, male moths are attracted to traps set about the museum and are covered with female pheromone. When they fly out of the trap the pheromone disruption causes other male moths to think they are chasing females rather than another male.
A spokesperson from the museum confirmed to THEGAYUK,
“We do not modify the moths’ behaviour in any way. Part of our programme includes spraying male clothes moths with female pheromones. Other males are attracted to the female pheromone but find a male when they get there – they are not attracted to the males themselves. This makes it harder for the moths to breed, helping to protect our collection of 80 million specimens.”
Convinced? Is sexuality about pheromones?