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MDA Begins Setting Nearly 15,000 Gypsy Moth Traps Statewide

MDA Delta on Quercus-alba White Oak MDA Delta on Quercus-alba White Oak | 

May 27, 2015 02:38 PM

ST. PAUL, Minn. – According to a press release, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) will set nearly 15,000 gypsy moth traps across Minnesota this spring. The work is part of the MDA’s annual detection trapping program and is designed to protect Minnesota’s forests and urban areas from new infestations of gypsy moth.

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MDA staff began the process in southern Minnesota on May 18 and will move through the northern portion of the state sometime after June 15. Organizers say they will be setting the thousands of traps over several weeks.

Gypsy moth traps are small, triangle-shaped and made of cardboard. All of the traps are set on trees or poles across the state and contain a pheromone to lure in male gypsy moths.  The traps are placed at a specific distance from each other in order to efficiently trap as many male moths as possible.

To be successful, it is important to maintain the trapping grid. Citizens are asked not to disturb the traps and to call MDA’s Arrest the Pest line at 888-545-MOTH (6684) if they would like traps moved or removed from their properties.

The traps will help identify areas that will need more localized treatments of control.  MDA says Northeastern Minnesota is expected to be the hot spot for gypsy moths in 2015.

“For over 40 years, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture and our partners have protected Minnesota’s trees from this extremely serious invasive pest threat,” MDA Plant Protection Director Geir Friisoe said in the release. “Our efforts have been important in protecting industries like tourism and forestry from economic harm and saving Minnesota from environmental damage. Each year we delay the moths is a victory for the environment and the economy.”

Gypsy moth caterpillars are a problem because they voraciously eat the leaves of many trees and shrubs, favoring oak, poplar, birch and willow. Severe, repeated infestations can kill trees, especially when the trees are already stressed by drought or other factors.

For more details about the trapping program and gypsy moth, visit the MDA website at www.mda.state.mn.us/gypsymoth.


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