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Hot on 24 March 2002
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Eastern Tent Caterpillar Hatching

Cliff Sadof, Entomology Department, Purdue University

Spring is in the air. According to the photos (below) taken by James Peter in Dubois county, the eggs of the eastern tent caterpillar have hatched. Eastern tent caterpillar has been very active over the past 2 years in most of Indiana. Outbreaks were heaviest in the southern half of the state. Eastern tent caterpillars make tents in the central crotches of flowering fruit trees. Defoliated and webbed trees dot the highways in April and May.

New controls are available for caterpillars this year that do a great job and do not kill natural enemies of other pests. Homeowners can use BT sprays or a formulation of spinosad called Bull's-Eye Bioinsecticide or Fertilome Caterpillar, Bagworm, Webworm and Sawfly Spray. These products should be available in home garden centers. A new insect growth regulator call Confirm (tebufenozide) works quite well and is labeled for use by commercial applicators.

Eastern Tent Caterpillar Egg Mass Eastern Tent Caterpillar
Eastern Tent Caterpillar Egg Mass Eastern Tent Caterpillar
(Photos by Jim Peter, Dubois Co. CES Educator)

For more information on Eastern Tent Caterpillar, please refer to the What's Hot from 3 May 2001.

Web on Trunk of Tree Close-up of Web on Trunk of Tree
Web on Trunk of Tree Close-up of Web on Trunk of Tree
(Photos by Jeff Burbrink, Elkart Co. CES Educator)

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Information listed is valid only for the state of Indiana.

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Last updated: 25 March 2002/tlm.

The Plant & Pest Diagnostic Laboratory at Purdue University.