Maggots On The Ceiling? (Easy Ways To Get Rid Of Them)

By - Hs Saini

Updated -

Have you been seeing some tiny flies on your ceiling? And, of course, you can’t stop wondering what they are and how they got there.

For this reason, if you have been exploring the internet to discover what they’re doing on your ceiling and how to get rid of them, this article is for you.

The fact is that the small flies you see on your ceiling aren’t maggots. Those flies are the larvae of an Indian meal moth. They’re also known as pantry moths, grain moths, or flour moths. There’s no way you would see maggots on your ceiling. Larvae don’t have wings; therefore, they can neither fly nor crawl.

What Are The Differences Between Maggots And Indian Meal Moths?

Someone that is just seeing an Indian meal moth for the first time would think it’s a larva. However, as identical as people claim they are, they are apparent differences.

Therefore, below are the differences between larvae and Indian meal moth;

  • The number one difference between them is size. Maggots are way smaller than the larvae of the Indian meal moths. Maggots have the size of ¼ inch, while a moth’s larvae size is ½ of an inch.
  • Maggots are the larvae of house flies and can’t move from where they are until they become adults because they don’t have legs. However, the small white worms on your ceiling are the larvae of the Indian meal moth. These can fly and crawl because they have wings/legs.
  • Moreover, maggots’ heads can hardly be seen; however, Indian meal moth’s larvae have a noticeable head.
  • Another thing that distinguishes them is color. Indian meal moths are always white with touches of pink or green, while maggots are always whitish/cream.

What Causes Maggots On Ceiling?

It has been mentioned above that what you see on your ceiling aren’t maggots but the larvae of the Indian meal moth. So now, you must be curious about how they got there and why.

The truth is, moth’s larvae don’t just appear on the ceiling without reason. Something must have attracted them to your home.

Therefore, below are some of the reasons why moth’s larvae are on your ceiling;

  • All does start from an adult Indian meal moth. Adult moths find their way into your home through open doors and windows during sunsets. Once they enter your home, they find a food pantry so that they can lay their eggs. The eggs hatch into larvae, and the larvae will continue feeding on the food to survive.
  •  After that, the larvae will search for a safe place to hide for a few days. That’s when they start to crawl onto the ceiling. Some foods that attract them the most are cereals, grains, nuts, etc.
  • The second way moth larvae enter your home is through the sealed foods you get from grocery stores. Indian meal moth’s larvae might have entered the food packets in one way or another. Then, without knowing, you take them home, which will lead to moth’s infestation. 

Maggots On Ceiling In The Kitchen

Larvae live in trash bins, so there’s no way they will get into your kitchen unless you keep rotten foods and a trash bin.

Even if you keep a trash bin in your kitchen, maggots can’t fly onto your ceiling or crawl on the walls because they do not have legs. Maggots wiggle to move. 

So, the small white worms that you see on your ceiling aren’t maggots but the larvae of the Indian meal moth.

And the reason they are on the ceiling of your kitchen because they found something that attracted them to your house.

Dry foods such as dog foods, food grains, cereals, and attract pantry moths. They see them as a means of survival. So, they use them as a safe place where they can easily reproduce.

After reproduction, the eggs hatch into larvae. The larvae feed on the foods and find their way to the ceiling, searching for where to hide till they pupate.

Maggots On Ceiling In Bedroom

Just as moth’s large can be seen on your ceiling in the kitchen, they can also be seen on your bedroom ceiling. It takes a tiny particle of food to attract flies.

If you are the type that keeps stored foods or grains inside your bedroom, then there is a high possibility of pantry moth’s infestation.

Indian meal moths are well-known as pests of stored foods.

The female Indian meal moth lays eggs inside the food, the eggs hatch into larvae, and the larvae find their way out and search for a place to hide.

So when you see these tiny white worms on your bedroom ceiling, they’re searching for where they can hide there. 

How To Get Rid Of Maggots On My Ceiling?

Now that you know how these tiny worms got to your ceiling, you must be very interested in getting rid of them.

However, you do not need any special skills to eliminate the larvae of Indian meal moths.

All you need to do is to follow the below instructions.

  • The first thing you must do is clean your home, either the kitchen or bedroom. To achieve this, you need to dispose of the spoiled foods in your house. 
  • Moreover, take the dry foods that you stored in your home outside. Spread them on a clean wide surface where there is sunlight. Indian meal moths hate sunlight, so that they will vacate themselves from your dry foods. 
  • Once you inspect the foods and they are no longer there, the next thing is to wash the dry foods with warm water.
  • After that, sundry the rewashed foods on a wide surface.
  • Once the food grains become completely dry, pack them in airtight containers. 
  • Next is to clean your food pantry, kitchen, and bedroom thoroughly. Finally, clean your kitchen cabinets, garbage packets, and wardrobes. It’s better to wash them with hot soapy water, and you can also spray the vinegar solution on the entire surface or scrub them with a quality disinfectant.
  • The last thing to do after cleaning is to cover up all the cracks and openings in your house. This action will prevent Indian meal moths from getting into your house.
  • You can also stop moths from getting into your house by planting certain plants around your house. Plants such as cedar, lavender, marigold, mint, etc., function as moths’ repellents.
  • To prevent pantry moths from infesting your home, you can also use flypaper as a trap for them.
  • Another way to prevent moth infestation is by inspecting food packets or bags of dry foods before buying them. Ensure that you check if there are any small holes or tears on what you are buying. 
  • Use Pro-spray flying aerosol or pro-spray indoor and outdoor to spray the food storage room. You can spray either on your bedroom ceiling or kitchen ceiling. Ensure that you cover your foods adequately and keep them away whenever you want to spray.

Can I Eat The Food That I Treated To Get Rid Of Pantry moths?

Yes, of course, you can. It’s super safe to consume the food you treated to eliminate Indian meal moths. Just ensure that you treat it according to the instructions given above.

Pantry moths are free of deadly pathogens and don’t spread diseases. So, enjoy your treated stored food with utmost rest of mind.


Maggots can’t get to your ceilings, either your bedroom ceiling or kitchen ceiling. What you see on them are the larvae of the pantry moth.

By now, you should be able to differentiate between maggots and Indian meal moths.

More so, you should be able to get rid of them without stress, and finally, you should be able to prevent them from infesting your home next time.

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