This photo taken by Leroy Betz in Hollenback Township is a rather ominous sign for next year. A half dozen gypsy moths laying egg masses on a tree in July signal that the destructive caterpillers will return in areas next summer. That means trees, primarily oaks, will be defoliated again and, in places where the caterpillers have occured year after year, the stress could be enough to do them in.
The invasive insects, which are native to Europe and was first discovered in Pennsylvania in 1932, have already killed millions of oak strees across the state, according to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. While the egg masses in Betz’s photo indicate the destrictuve pests will be back next summer, predators such as birds and a fungus caused by damp weather can help control any outbreaks.
Capture anything interesting on your hand-held or trail camera? A nice buck, bear, coyote or any other wildlife? We’d love to see it. Each week, we’ll run photos from a reader’s trail camera on the Sunday Outdoors page. Email your photo, along with date and area it was taken (township is fine), and any other details to [email protected]