Localized gypsy moth infestations in five N.C. counties are now being, or will soon be, treated by the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
The treatments in Onslow and Wayne counties were expected to begin on April 7, dependent upon the weather and insect development. Treatments in Caswell, Currituck and Warren Counties are expected to begin April 14.
NCDA &CS says gypsy moths feed on 300 different tree and shrub species, particularly hardwoods. Infestations can lead to death of the trees and in severe cases defoliation can leave yard trees and entire forests susceptible.
Fine mist applications of Gypchek, a biological pesticide, or of Bt (k), a biological pesticide, will be made. Neither of these are harmful to humans or animals, although Bt (k) applications may cause a slight, temporary allergic reaction to people with severe allergic tendencies. People susceptible to the allergies are advised to stay indoors during the treatments.
The applications will be made by helicopter or by fixed wing aircraft. For more information including maps and descriptions of the treatment areas, visit www.ncagr.gov/gypsymoth or contact NCDA&CS toll free at (800) 206-9333.
You can also follow the department on Twitter at www.twitter.com/NCAgriculture for updates, including start dates for treatments.