Gypsy Moth Caterpillars start to exit their eggs at the end of April, beginning of May. They grow and initially descend from the trees on their webbing, just to start the trek back up the tree trunk to forage on the leaves. This stage of growth, descending and then trekking back up the trunk is the targeted time for our treatment spray. When abundant, caterpillars can completely defoliate trees. Although healthy trees can survive defoliation, repeated removal of leaves can kill a tree. Older, less vigorous trees can be killed by a single defoliation.
The female gypsy moth lays between 600 to 1,000 eggs in a compact, tear-dropped shaped mass of eggs and silk. The egg masses remain in place all winter and hatch the following spring.
The Gypsy Moth life cycle is as such:
End of August to end of April - Egg stage
End of April to the beginning of June - Caterpillar stage
Beginning of June to beginning/mid of July - Pupa stage (cocoon)
Beginning/mid of July to end of August - Moth stage
They are most active and pose the most damage during the Caterpillar stage between end of April to the beginning of June.
WHEN INVADING HUMAN LIVING SPACE
The long hairs of the caterpillar can cause skin irritation or allergic reactions in some people. Also the Gypsy Moth Caterpillar destroys the beauty of woodlands by feeding on the foliage of trees, shrubs and other plants. Their excretions leave behind an enormous mess.
If your large trees sustain damage from gypsy moths three seasons in a row, they will die and not only will you loose the tree, you will also have the hefty expense of removing the tree. In cases where the trees are saplings, they need treatment immediately and in most cases cannot sustain even one season of damage.
Balson recommends a spray treatment for your full property (by acreage), which includes your wooded areas or at the very least the inside perimeter of your lawn (where your lawn meets your wooded area), your gardens, bushes/shrubs, entertainment areas and the perimeter of your home and out buildings. When treating trees, we cover up to 10 ft of the tree trunk and the underside of the foliage. Any areas that are treated up into the tree are an added benefit. Our sprayers can spray up to 25 ft high. We have found that customers vary in their needs and expectations. We either have customers that want every tree saved on their property or customers that want their outdoor living areas and the trees on their lawn (active living area) treated.
Our treatment window is primarily end of April to mid June, but is still beneficial up to early July.
The Gypsy Moth spray treatment (due to the fact that the caterpillars travel on webs in the wind from other locations), when applied as recommended is an efficient stage in reduction.
The male moths emerge earlier than the females. An additional form of control is to hang Gypsy Moth catchers in select trees around the property, just under the umbrella of the tree canopy. The catchers have a pheromone strip in them and a sticky pad or soapy water in the bottom. The pheromone is representative of the scent the female releases. The males are lured into the catcher because of the pheromone, they get trapped and are extinguished. This is an important step in reduction, by preventing the males from fertilization and continuing the cycle.
Call today to prebook your treatment and order you Moth Catchers as spots fill up quick and its important to take care of your arbor culture.