WHAT: Gypsy moth aerial spraying by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection's Gypsy Moth Slow the Spread Program
WHEN: July 14-15.
WHERE: Chippewa, Dunn and Eau Claire counties. Select blocks in Chippewa, Dunn and Eau Claire counties were successfully treated July 14-15. Aerial spray treatments in all three counties have been completed for the year.
The only Wisconsin counties remaining to be treated this year are: Rusk, Sawyer and Bayfield. They are scheduled to be treated mid-week next week. Stay tuned for email updates closer to spray dates.
Maps of spray sites are available to view online at http://gypsymoth.wi.gov. (Click on each respective county to see spray block locations; then click on each respective spray block for a close-up map of the block.)
WHY: Spraying is necessary to control the spread of gypsy moth, a destructive and invasive pest that feeds on the leaves of oaks, maples, crabapple, birch and many other species of trees and shrubs.
Spraying can start as early as 6 a.m. and will continue throughout the day until the day's spray plan is complete and as weather conditions allow. Spraying requires calm winds, high humidity and no precipitation.
Single-engine applicator planes will fly low, above the tree tops. They will be loud. Planes will apply a mating disruption product (pheromone flakes).
PRODUCT & OTHER DETAILS:
Pheromone flakes are a mating disruption product. The flakes are tiny – about the size of a grain of rice. They are flat and green. The sticky flakes are applied at a rate of one to two flakes per square foot of tree canopy.
Pheromone flakes do not kill or harm any living creatures, including gypsy moths. Flakes are applied to confuse adult male moths and keep them from finding females, thus preventing or significantly reducing gypsy moth reproduction levels. In nature, male gypsy moths fly, and female moths cannot. In order to find each other and reproduce, the females release a pheromone for the males to track and follow.
Similarly, the flakes also release this pheromone. The male moths then track and follow a false trail, and, finding no female, no reproduction takes place. The same pheromone also is used as a lure to catch male gypsy moths in traps.
The spraying does not affect organic certification. It is not toxic to people, bees, animals, birds and plants. The pheromone is undetectable to other insects.
People who are uncomfortable or have allergies may wish to stay indoors or leave the area until the spraying is done. Pets or livestock may be frightened by the noise of the low-flying planes, so keep them indoors or keep a close eye on them.
Feel free to share this information with others.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Spray updates will be available as a recorded message on the toll-free hotline 1-800-642-6684, press 1. You also can call the hotline to talk to staff or leave a message. Include your name, phone number and the county you're calling from in your message.