SOURCE: News release from Indiana Department of Natural Resources
Aerial treatments to disrupt the mating process of gypsy moths in Fulton, Marshall, and Wabash counties is set to take place on Friday, June 14, weather permitting. If treatments do not occur on Friday, then treatments will take place the following week.
Planes will treat sites in Indiana after treatments in Ohio are completed. The treatment date depends on weather and the completion of the Ohio treatment sites.
Treatment typically begins in the early morning and continues until completed or stopped by weather. During treatments, people will see airplanes flying 75-125 feet above the treetops.
The mating disruption technique has been used in other states and in Indiana since 1999. It has proven effective where there is a low-level infestation and female moths are difficult to find.
This year’s mating disruption treatments will be an aerial application of SPLAT GM-Organic.
SPLAT is a liquid that carries the scent of the female gypsy moth and falsely indicates an abundance of females in the treated area. The males are unable to find a female, fail to mate, and no offspring is produced.
The application poses no health threat to people, pets, livestock, or other animals. Promptly washing vehicles with soap and water will remove the product.
Gypsy moth is one of North America’s most devastating invasive forest pests. It was brought to this country from Europe in the 1860s. The gypsy moth is capable of defoliating 3 million acres of forest a year, and most trees in Indiana’s urban and natural forests are susceptible to gypsy moth damage. The insect is a threat to wildlife habitat and the timber industry.
For more information, call 1-866-NO-EXOTIC (663-9684) or call the local county extension office at 1-888-EXT-INFO (1-888-398-4636). Follow the Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology on Twitter @INdnrinvasive.
Detailed maps of the treatment sites are at gypsymoth.IN.gov.
To view all DNR news releases, please see dnr.IN.gov.