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June 13, 2014
Contact: Elaine J. Lidholm, 804.786.7686

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the United States Department of Agriculture - Forest Service are cooperating in an aerial insecticide application project to suppress and/or eradicate small isolated infestations of the gypsy moth. The treatments are scheduled for June 16 -17 in the counties of Bland, Carroll, Floyd, Patrick and Wythe. Treatments will be conducted near the areas of Walker Mountain in Bland and Wythe counties, Bell Spur in Carroll and Patrick counties, Tuggle Gap in Floyd County, Rock Castle Gap in Floyd and Patrick counties and Buffalo Mountain and Conner’s Grove in Floyd County.

The treatments are part of the Gypsy Moth Slow the Spread program. Treatment is necessary because the leaf-eating gypsy moth caterpillar can cause dramatic devastation in Virginia’s forests. These invasive pests are voracious eaters and can completely defoliate entire trees. They have been known to defoliate up to 13 million acres of trees in one season. Their presence on trees and roads and their ability to strip or kill a tree can have a negative impact on outdoor recreation, and the death of many trees can change the mix of tree species and affect dependent wildlife. They will crawl on houses, cars, outside toys and picnic tables, making outdoor activities unpleasant.
The applications will be conducted using airplanes during daylight hours, weather permitting. Click here for specific treatment dates.

The treatment will consist of one application of the gypsy moth mating disruption pheromone Hercon Disrupt II®. The pheromone hampers the ability of the male gypsy moth to find and mate a female gypsy moth. Information on the Hercon Disrupt II® can be found on the manufacturer’s website.

Information on the gypsy moth and the mating disruption treatments can be found on the website below or by contacting the VDACS Gypsy Moth Slow the Spread Office at 540.394.2507: Slow the Spread Program (STS).

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