LDD Life cycle

MARKHAM, ON – June 17, 2021 – This Summer, the European Gypsy Moth – Lymantria dispar dispar (LDD) – is infesting parts of Canada, the United States and Mexico for a second year. This is a natural part of the LDD’s lifecycle which includes a very noticeable population boom every seven to 10 years.

The City of Markham uses a sustainable approach to managing LDD that combines biological, cultural and physical factors to control a specific pest in a way that minimizes impacts to others. At this time, the City of Markham has not sprayed affected trees as a method of control.

In March and April, the City of Markham sent staff to manually remove and destroy LDD egg masses from approximately 6,000 City street trees and encouraged residents to do the same for trees on their property.

LDD caterpillars prefer to feed on oak tree leaves, but they will also eat the leaves of many other species including maple, elm, birch, poplar and willow trees.

The damaging caterpillar stage lasts for about seven weeks. At this time the caterpillars will crawl down the tree to hide from natural predators during the day, and then crawl back up the tree to eat at night. From now until August, residents can trap the caterpillars by wrapping a piece of burlap around each tree trunk for them to hide there. It is important to check underneath the burlap every afternoon and put the trapped caterpillars into a bucket of soapy water for a day or two before putting them in the garbage. Remember to wear gloves to prevent skin irritation and reactions.

Video: European Gypsy Moth – Lymantria dispar dispar (LDD) Burlap Banding Traps

Squirrels, chipmunks, raccoons, skunks, birds and insects will not be able to eat all the caterpillars so they will need your help.

Please note, even if your tree has little or no leaves, it is still alive and will try and make more leaves later this year or store up energy to try again next year. You can help by watering the trees on your property to encourage new leaves to grow.

In the late Summer and Fall, the LDD caterpillars will turn into moths and lay more egg masses. From August 2021 to April 2022, scrape these egg masses off the trees and soak them in soapy water for a day or two before putting them in the garbage. Every egg mass that you can remove means less caterpillars the next spring.

For more information, visit markham.ca/LDDMoth or york.ca/LDDmoth.

Related links:

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Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti's Office:
Bryan Frois, Chief of Staff at bfrois@markham.ca or 416.567.1177.

All other media inquiries / interview requests for the City of Markham:
Jennifer Yap, Coordinator, Communications and Media Relations at jyap@markham.ca or 437.229.2450.

For COVID-19 announcements from the City of Markham:
Visit markham.ca/covid19 or listen to 105.9 The Region – Markham’s information and emergency radio station.

About Markham: Markham, an award-winning municipality with over 351,000 residents and the largest of nine communities in York Region, is home to over 650 corporate head offices and more than 1,500 high tech and life science companies. Markham is a leader in attracting foreign direct investment with more than 240 foreign companies located in the City. Founded in the 1790s, today Markham is Canada’s most diverse community and enjoys a rich heritage, outstanding community planning and services, and a vibrant local economy. Markham has received the Excellence Canada Gold Award for Organizational Quality & Healthy Workplace, and multiple heritage and environmental awards.

Stay Connected: Visit our newsroom or search #MarkhamNews and #MarkhamEvents for the latest information on City programs, services and event.

LDD Life cycle

MARKHAM, ON – June 17, 2021 – This Summer, the European Gypsy Moth – Lymantria dispar dispar (LDD) – is infesting parts of Canada, the United States and Mexico for a second year. This is a natural part of the LDD’s lifecycle which includes a very noticeable population boom every seven to 10 years.

The City of Markham uses a sustainable approach to managing LDD that combines biological, cultural and physical factors to control a specific pest in a way that minimizes impacts to others. At this time, the City of Markham has not sprayed affected trees as a method of control.

In March and April, the City of Markham sent staff to manually remove and destroy LDD egg masses from approximately 6,000 City street trees and encouraged residents to do the same for trees on their property.

LDD caterpillars prefer to feed on oak tree leaves, but they will also eat the leaves of many other species including maple, elm, birch, poplar and willow trees.

The damaging caterpillar stage lasts for about seven weeks. At this time the caterpillars will crawl down the tree to hide from natural predators during the day, and then crawl back up the tree to eat at night. From now until August, residents can trap the caterpillars by wrapping a piece of burlap around each tree trunk for them to hide there. It is important to check underneath the burlap every afternoon and put the trapped caterpillars into a bucket of soapy water for a day or two before putting them in the garbage. Remember to wear gloves to prevent skin irritation and reactions.

Video: European Gypsy Moth – Lymantria dispar dispar (LDD) Burlap Banding Traps

Squirrels, chipmunks, raccoons, skunks, birds and insects will not be able to eat all the caterpillars so they will need your help.

Please note, even if your tree has little or no leaves, it is still alive and will try and make more leaves later this year or store up energy to try again next year. You can help by watering the trees on your property to encourage new leaves to grow.

In the late Summer and Fall, the LDD caterpillars will turn into moths and lay more egg masses. From August 2021 to April 2022, scrape these egg masses off the trees and soak them in soapy water for a day or two before putting them in the garbage. Every egg mass that you can remove means less caterpillars the next spring.

For more information, visit markham.ca/LDDMoth or york.ca/LDDmoth.

Related links:

-30-

Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti's Office:
Bryan Frois, Chief of Staff at bfrois@markham.ca or 416.567.1177.

All other media inquiries / interview requests for the City of Markham:
Jennifer Yap, Coordinator, Communications and Media Relations at jyap@markham.ca or 437.229.2450.

For COVID-19 announcements from the City of Markham:
Visit markham.ca/covid19 or listen to 105.9 The Region – Markham’s information and emergency radio station.

About Markham: Markham, an award-winning municipality with over 351,000 residents and the largest of nine communities in York Region, is home to over 650 corporate head offices and more than 1,500 high tech and life science companies. Markham is a leader in attracting foreign direct investment with more than 240 foreign companies located in the City. Founded in the 1790s, today Markham is Canada’s most diverse community and enjoys a rich heritage, outstanding community planning and services, and a vibrant local economy. Markham has received the Excellence Canada Gold Award for Organizational Quality & Healthy Workplace, and multiple heritage and environmental awards.

Stay Connected: Visit our newsroom or search #MarkhamNews and #MarkhamEvents for the latest information on City programs, services and event.