As part of the About Time South Australia’s History Festival program, Community History Programs hosted an information session on common pests affecting historical collections. What Bug is That? focused on identifying pests and simple ways to keep them at bay.
Led by Anne Dineen, Senior Preventive Conservator from Artlab Australia, the information session looked at basic pest identification and management – which pests are a potential problem, what objects are most at risk, how and when to check for pest activity and strategies for averting pest infestations.
Anne brought an army of pests with her (not alive) so everyone could get a close up look at various insects at different stages of their lifecycles. She also brought a variety of pest-damaged objects to demonstrate what damage can be done and how to recognise what pest may have caused the damage. A framed photo so badly damaged that many of the photo features are now unrecognisable was a striking example of how much damage can be done if pests go undetected for any period of time!
You can find information about managing pests and cleaning in museums on this website.