Gypsy Moths are back

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Gypsy Moths are back

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The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service, Forest Health Protection provides a program to property owners and /or local governments to control growing populations of the invasive species Lymantria dispar, better known as the Gypsy Moth. This insect does its damage by defoliating the tree during its caterpillar life stage. A couple of years of defoliation and other environmental stresses can cause the trees to die. With over 300 species of trees and shrubs that can be affected, it is considered one of the most destructive insect pests threatening our forest and ornamental plants in Ohio. If left unchecked, Gypsy Moth infestations can grow quite rapidly.
ODA received an application from local government officials in your area, requesting an aerial treatment to control a growing population of Gypsy Moth. ODA has recently completed an analysis of Gypsy Moth populations within the proposed treatment area and based on the number of egg masses found, we have concluded that a treatment is needed. ODA, in cooperation with the USDA, Forest Service, will be conducting a Gypsy Moth Suppression Treatment Project in your area. Aerial treatment(s) of forested areas infested with the Gypsy Moth pest will begin in early to mid-May with an larvacide treatment.
The purpose of this letter is to inform your department that this program will take place and supply you with informational material so that your staff is well informed to answer any questions from the public.
Treatments will be made with the following:
A double application of the biological insecticide B.t.k. (Bacillus thuringiensis, subspecies kurstaki, known under the commercial name Foray 48B, to the tree canopy. These application(s) will occur in early to mid-May while the pest is in its early caterpillar stages. A second application will take place approximately 5 to 7 days after the first application. When ingested by the Gypsy Moth, toxins form in the stomach causing the caterpillar to stop eating, resulting in its death.
Even though scientific research shows the products used are not considered harmful to humans, residents with concerns may want to remain indoors during the treatments, but there is no requirement to do so.
All treatments will be applied from an aircraft flown approximately 50 to 100 feet above the tree tops. The exact time and date of treatment applications in your area cannot be determined in advance. The timing of treatments is dependent on insect development and environmental conditions. We will attempt to contact your department by phone or e-mail prior to the start of treatments in your area.
Information about the Gypsy Moth and the ODA Gypsy Moth Management Program is available on our website www.agri.ohio.gov , click on "Safeguarding Animals & Plants", then click on "Plant Health", and then click on "Gypsy Moth Program". Copies of the fact sheets, insecticide label, MSDS, and a map of the treatment area( s) are enclosed for your reference.
An Open House has been scheduled for the public on the following date: Tuesday, February 19, 2019, .at the Brecksville Community Center, 1 Community Dr., Brecksville, OH, from 6:00pm to 8:00pm.
Notification letters will be sent to all residents that will be affected by this treatment. The public comment period ends February 28, 2019.
If you have any questions, please contact our office at 614-728-6400 or by e-mail at adkins@agri.ohio.gov.