Vermont caterpillar infestation likely to continue next year

July 3, 2021 GMT

BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — An infestation of gypsy moth caterpillars that are defoliating trees in parts of Vermont this summer is expected to continue next year, according to Vermont state entomologist Judy Rosovsky.

Experts say the lack of aerial surveillance and spraying last year due to the coronavirus pandemic combined with dry weather in 2020 that suppressed the gypsy moth’s natural enemy, contributed to this year’s outbreak, WPTZ-TV reported.

The caterpillars defoliate many tree species particularly the oak and birch.