Monthly Archives

May 2013

Featured Pest: Tent Caterpillars

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Tent CaterpillarThey are not obvious until we see the first creepy, crawly tents high up in the trees. After that, we begin to see them everywhere.

These wriggly balls are Western Tent Caterpillars. About every 7 years, they show up at population levels that threaten our trees. Tent Caterpillars only attack broadleaf trees and shrubs. If you see tents on conifers, it is probably the Silverspotted Tiger Moth which can also inflict severe damage.

These pests usually cause unsightly defoliation, but not to the extent of killing the tree. However, in years where the infestations are high, the damage can be severe enough to kill the tree, especially if it is under stress from other causes.

It is important to treat these tents as soon as possible due to the speed of defoliation. Be aware that the caterpillars do not stay in the tent, but migrate to other branches for feeding. You will miss many of the caterpillars if you choose to only remove the tents. Therefore, we treat the tent and several feet up and down the branch to assure elimination.

If you are noticing the “Big Bags of Cotton” on your trees please call us for advice or service at 360-629-7378.

Why be concerned about Carpenter Ants?

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Carpenter Ants build two types of nests: parent and satellite colonies. Parent colonies consist of a queen and workers ants. Satellite colonies consist of thousands of workers.  Satellite colonies are typically located within 30 feet from the parent nest. There could be many satellites associated with one parent.

If treated quickly, Carpenter Ants are seldom responsible for serious structural damage, but they can cause major damage if they aren’t detected or treated for an extended period. It is best to contact a Pest Control professional at the first sight of carpenter ants.