Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
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Tend to Browntail Moth Webs Now

Browntail moths. English photo
Browntail moths. English photo
Browntail caterpillar webs. English photo
Browntail caterpillar webs. English photo
 

March 1, 2020

If you find browntail moth webs within reach, clip them by mid-April and destroy the webs by soaking them in soapy water or burning them. Winter is the best time to clip webs due to the low risk of exposure to the caterpillars’ toxic hairs, due to caterpillar dormancy, and because of the high visibility of webs before leaves emerge. Viable webs will be at the tips of branches and will shine and glimmer in the sun due to the fresh white silk that holds the web together. Although risk of exposure to hairs at this time of year is low,  take proper precautions, especially you’re sensitive, since remnants of cocoons and cast skins of caterpillars can be present in the trees. For more information, see the video resource for clipping webs at (Source: Maine Forest Service)

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