Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Winter Moth

If it's not one thing, it's another. UConn asks that we be on the alert for an invasive moth that originated in Europe and entered Nova Scotia in the 1950's. It has been spotted in the New London area and inland areas of eastern Connecticut as far north as Woodstock. It is also in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. According to the UConn Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program:

"This exotic insect is of great concern in our state due to its propensity for significant feeding damage to a number of fruit crops, trees, shrubs, and perennials. Winter moth has a broad host range, including apples, blueberries and a wide range of ornamentals.
At this time of year the larvae have moved from within the expanding buds and leaves and are now openly feeding on the foliage. Young larvae feed in and cause severe damage to developing buds on host plants, while older larvae become free feeders on plant foliage, which may cause complete defoliation.
Larvae are pale green caterpillars with a white stripe running down each side of the body. They have 2 pairs of prolegs, which are located at the back end of their body. They grow to a length of about 1 inch. Larvae are expected to be feeding on foliage within the next 2-3 weeks.The larvae will continue to feed until pupation, which will occur in late May or early June."
Please see the following sites for fact sheets, pictures and control information on winter moth:
Contact Donna Ellis or call 860-486-6448 if you suspect you have this pest.