The Spruce Budworm is back in Maine and it is destructive

Maine has some real problem pests that only come around once every 30 to 60 years and the Spruce Budworm is one of them, according to bangordailynews.com.

That is not good news for the softwoods.

Not only have they been suffering from drought conditions, but the Spruce Budworm can also stress out the trees and make them more vulnerable to diseases, the newspaper reported.

A Once or Twice in a Generation Event

Since the Spruce Budworm only happens once or twice in a lifetime, scientists are pretty pumped up about the opportunity to study the creature.

The University of Maine at Fort Kent assistant professor Neil Thompson tells bangornews.com, “When the needles have been chewed off, the trees grow less.  It’s a fascinating bug.”

The moth lays its eggs in the summer and the larvae eat all the delicious pine needles when they hatch, according to the BDN.

Any Good News?

The upside to having the Spruce Budworm is a boom for birds in the area, according to the BDN.  It’s like a never-ending buffet of caterpillars for them to eat.

The hope is that we have enough birds to keep the Spruce Budworm population under control, so they don’t become out of control attacking the trees which are vital to Maine’s timber economy, according to the BDN.

Let’s hope the birds eat their fill of these hungry caterpillars.

 

 

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