Webworm Caterpillars are out and about!

Jun 24, 2019 | yard insect control

You have probably been walking around the neighborhood and have seen the webbing at the end of some tree branches. It’s webworm caterpillar season. The season can range from April through the fall season here in Texas and with the recent ideal conditions of moderate temperatures and rain, it seems to have caused an influx of webworm caterpillars in our area. You will see the loose silky nests of the webworms on branch ends. The webworms are caterpillars that weave loose webbing around the tree’s branch ends and foliage. webworm caterpillars

The webworm caterpillars are about an inch or so in length and pale green or yellowish with black or brown markings. The caterpillars within the webbing will eat the branch leaves and can cause stress and leaf loss if left unchecked. They feed for 3-4 weeks, expanding their web as they go. The webworms won’t leave the tree until they’re ready to make a cocoon to tuck away for the winter.

If you are noticing webbing of webworm caterpillars in your trees, there are some things you can do to alleviate the issue:

  • If the webbing is small and has just started and the branches are low enough, you can handpick or remove the webbing from the branches.
  • Open up the webbing. This will allow predators of the caterpillars, such as birds, lizards, wasps, and other natural enemies of the caterpillar easier access to feed upon them.
  • Try hanging bird feeders on or near the branches to attract birds to the area.
  • There can be several generations in one growing season so have your professional pest control operator apply material specifically labeled for the webworm caterpillars early.
  • Prune back and dispose of the branches with the webbing attached to avoid further damage of leaves.

It is important to treat pest infestations as soon as you notice web-like structures on your tree. Delaying treatment allows time for the webworm caterpillar infestation to worsen, or the pest to mature and prepare for next season’s population, making it harder to control. During the fall season, the webworm caterpillars will start to lay their eggs to overwinter and this generation will hatch out of the same tree next spring.

If you think you may have webworms or other lawn and ornamental pest issues, contact  Bio-Tech Pest Control today at 281-296-6022.

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