European Gypsy Moths Threaten Area Oak Trees

By Emily Dwire
By Rachel Martin

June 30, 2013 Updated Jun 30, 2013 at 6:41 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) – First it was the Emerald Ash Borer, now it’s the Gypsy Moth threatening the livelihood of trees around Allen County.

Who knew something so small could do so much damage? Similar to the Emerald Ash Borer and Ash trees, the European Gypsy Moth is threatening Indiana’s oak trees.

Back in 2011, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) released a report that showed Allen County had one of the highest concentrations of gypsy moths in the state.

When the moths are in the caterpillar stage, they eat as much leaf tissue as they can in their seven to ten week feeding period. If a tree loses more than 50 percent of its leaves for more than two years in a row, it may not survive.

Although the gypsy moths feed on more than 500 different kinds of trees, they prefer oaks. Officials’ best advice is to destroy egg masses as soon as you find them by dropping them in a bucket of hot, soapy water.

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