Caterpillar Pest Control
There is a disaster happening in the Caribou-Targhee National Forest in Idaho! You may not believe it but it is all caused by a small caterpillar named a western spruce budworm.
It is when the budworm is in its larvae state that you need to be concerned. The larvae are usually a pale shade of green with some black spots. The budworm causes all its damage when it is in this larvae state before it turns into an adult moth later in the year.
Western Spruce Budworm Caterpillar Damage
The problem is that these caterpillars eat like there is no tomorrow! They spend all day going from tree to tree and plant to plant. They eat all the leaves and leave the trees defoliated. This can be devastating to the look of the tree and it can affect the overall health of the tree too.
Budworm Caterpillar Pest Control
The caterpillar can be treated by conventional methods of pest control but finding out what pest you have is the biggest problem.
The caterpillars are able to stay hidden most of the day and can be hard to locate on the tree or plant. They blend into the leaves and branches and don’t move much.
The best time to go out and look for them is early in the morning when they are up and eating. Be sure to check under the leaves.
The budworm outbreak in the Caribou-Targhee National Forest is so bad the US Forest Service office said they are having calls come in from concerned visitors. The visitors that are spending time in the forest are concerned about the number of trees that seem to be dying or at least losing their leaves.
The budworm is not normally what will kill a tree but they are what eats away at the leaves. This, in turn, will weaken the tree and will make it more prone to other insects and bugs that can cause even more damage.
When the leaves are eaten off, the nutrients that should be feeding the entire tree have to be used to replenish the leaves that are missing.
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