The West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA), in cooperation with the United States Department of Agriculture-Forest Service (USDA-FS), successfully completed aerial treatment of approximately 38,550 acres for the purpose of slowing the spread of gypsy moth to forested lands within West Virginia.
“The gypsy moth is a serious forest pest in West Virginia,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Gus R. Douglass. “It feeds on more than 500 species of trees and shrubs, including West Virginia’s valuable hardwoods. I have been extremely proud of our gypsy moth programs over the years.” This program has been a model for other states to follow throughout the country.
“Treatments took place as part of the WVDA’s Gypsy Moth Slow the Spread Program,” said Quentin “Butch” Sayers, WVDA Plant Industries Division Assistant Director. “This Program specifically addresses the leading edge of the gypsy moth problem and determined that treatment was needed in McDowell and Mercer Counties in 2012, as a result of 2011 gypsy moth trapping.”
Tiny pheromone flakes (1/32" x 3/32" in size) were used for the treatments and were applied at 6 grams per acre. These tiny flakes are impregnated with a pheromone that mimics the scent of the female gypsy moth. Pheromone flakes act to disrupt gypsy moth mating by confusing the male gypsy moths resulting in a reduction in the spread rate of the gypsy moth. The attractant is specific for gypsy moth and no other insects. The STS Pheromone Flake Project was completed June 5.
For more information on the WVDA’s Gypsy Moth Program, contact Quentin “Butch” Sayers via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Department of Agriculture