Viewing: defoliator

Here We Go Again! Forest Tent Caterpillar Outbreak Continues for Fifth Year

By on June 5, 2019

The forest tent caterpillar strikes again! Just after getting them this spring, trees along the Roanoke River, Chowan River, and Lake Waccamaw once again lost their leaves. The very hungry caterpillar responsible for this defoliation, the forest tent caterpillar, is

Bagworms on the Move

By on August 1, 2018

Everyone expects pinecones to fall to the ground and stay put, so when one encounters a small ‘pinecone’ crawling across the ground, it is often met with surprise! Since when did pinecones have legs!? Fear not: evolution hasn’t taken us

Season Confusion: Fall webworm making its debut

By on June 6, 2018

It may seem early to be talking about fall, but the fall webworm is already beginning to rear its ugly web. Called the fall webworm because the web nests in which it makes its home are highly visible in the

DIY Sticky Bands Can Protect Trees from Cankerworms in the Spring

By on November 15, 2017

Turkey will be the main course for many North Carolinians next week as we celebrate Thanksgiving.  After the kitchen is cleaned up however, there’s no time to rest.  Instead, it’s time to worry about another main course which you won’t

Fall webworm makes big webs, causes little worry

By on September 13, 2017

With scarf and pumpkin spice latte season right around the corner, enjoying the outdoors in the cooling weather is becoming more pleasant.  It’s also a more pleasant season for the fall webworm, who’s growing appetite is becoming more apparent. Called

Variable oakleaf caterpillar has big appetite, poses minor threat (unless caterpillar poop bothers you)

By on July 26, 2017

  This summer, North Carolina has its own “Very Hungry Caterpillar,” a favorite children’s book character known for its large appetite. This caterpillar won’t eat through various fruits, cupcakes and ice cream as it does in the book, though. Rather,

The black locust tree gets bronze

By on September 14, 2016

The Summer Olympics may be over, but there is one more bronze to give out.  In parts of western N.C., hillsides covered in black locust trees are turning bronze. Despite the remaining summer temperatures, it looks like early fall color

Strong as an Oak: Trees should be OK against seasonal pest

By on August 17, 2016

Summer is winding down, which means backpacks, No. 2 pencils, and the orangestriped oakworms are back! This native caterpillar is black with orange stripes and has two conspicuous horns near its head. Every year as we head into the last few

Eastern tent caterpillar camps out in NC trees

By on April 27, 2016

Over the past several weeks, growing silk tents can be seen adorning many roadside trees, nestled between branches. These aren’t off-season Halloween décor and spiders aren’t the only creatures that create silken structures. The offending organism is much less scary:

It’s a wrap: DIY cankerworm management

By on November 18, 2015

Next week, many North Carolinians will be enjoying a turkey feast to celebrate Thanksgiving. Once the tryptophan-induced naps are over, however, it’s time to worry about another feast: the feast that cankerworms enjoy every spring as they feed on deciduous