Aerial mating disruption treatments conducted by Indiana DNR divisions of Forestry and Entomology & Plant Pathology to slow the spread of gypsy moth, now called spongy moth, are planned for the week of June 20.
Spongy moth is one of North America’s most devastating invasive forest pests and has caused thousands of acres of defoliation across the eastern United States.
Mating-disruption treatments for this destructive pest using SPLAT GM-Organic are planned in Allen, Fulton, Huntington, Kosciusko, Marshall, Miami, Porter, Pulaski, Starke, Wabash, and Wells counties and will take several days to complete.
Treatment begins shortly after sunrise but could be delayed until later in the morning or the next day due to unfavorable weather conditions such as morning fog or rain.
Treatment time will vary depending on the size of the treatment site. A yellow airplane flying 75-125 feet above the treetops will conduct the treatments, continuing throughout the scheduled day, as the weather and flight schedules permit. With favorable weather, treatments may be completed by late morning or early afternoon.
SPLAT GM-Organic is a biodegradable, food-grade material infused with the female pheromone to attract and confuse the male moths so that mating does not take place.
This material does not affect any insects other than spongy moth.
Once treatment begins, rain or high wind may interrupt it for that day. If that happens, treatment will resume the next suitable day and continue until all sites have been treated.
Updates will be posted on Twitter @INdnrinvasive. DNR will also issue news releases to update the status.
To determine if your property is in the treatment areas, or to view maps of all treatment locations, or for more information, see gypsymoth.IN.gov.