The white moth vs. the trees

You have seen them this year, and I would be willing to bet that you haven’t seen a year worse than this one. roadside tree copy

I am talking about the webworms. They have literally inhabited whole trees this year. It looks almost surreal seeing a landscape full of web-covered trees.

From just the right angle of the road, when the sun is shining through the leafless trees, one might think they are looking at the result of a winter ice storm.

What we are really seeing is the cycle of early survival for the white moth. Maybe I should say the white moth’s offspring, which someday aspires to grow into a white moth.

Right now, when we see it in the tree, it is just a worm which hatched from a moth egg on a leaf. A leaf eating worm. They build the webs to protect themselves from predators so they can devour as many leaves as possible. When they have eaten all the leaves within the protection of the web, they extend the web to cover more leaves and then they eat, eat, eat. It’s not a pretty sight.

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