Pest

Forestry partners take lead in 2018 EAB trapping

By Paul Cigan, forest health specialist, Hayward. Paul.Cigan@wisconsin.gov; 715-416-4920

As summer approaches, adult emerald ash borer (EAB) beetles are beginning to emerge to feed and reproduce.

Areas of possible initial EAB emergence.

USDA APHIS EAB emergence map. Map credit: USDA Cooperative Emerald Ash Borer Project

Due to the recent statewide quarantine for emerald ash borer and workload considerations, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Plant Protection and Quarantine (APHIS PPQ), the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP), and the Wisconsin DNR Forest Health Program have discontinued trapping programs for adult beetles in Wisconsin. Continue reading “Forestry partners take lead in 2018 EAB trapping”

Eastern tent caterpillar and control options

By Linda Williams, forest health specialist, Woodruff. Linda.Williams@wisconsin.gov; 715-356-5211 x232

Young eastern tent caterpillars on their web nest. Photo: Linda Williams

Young eastern tent caterpillars on their web nest. Photo: Linda Williams

Winter is finally over and eastern tent caterpillars are hatching and building their web nests! In northern Wisconsin, the caterpillars began hatching in early to mid-May, but they emerged earlier in southern Wisconsin. Webs will become larger as the caterpillars feed and grow. Continue reading “Eastern tent caterpillar and control options”

Forest tent caterpillar: surveys, prediction, and history

By Paul Cigan, forest health specialist, Hayward. Paul.Cigan@wisconsin.gov; 715-416-4920

Areas in northern Wisconsin with forest tent caterpillar defoliation during the peak year of most recent regionwide outbreak, from 1999 – 2002

Forest tent caterpillar larvae feeding on ash foliage. Photo: Paul Cigan

Late-winter surveys in northern Wisconsin for egg masses of forest tent caterpillars (FTC) suggest that numbers will remain low through 2018, continuing a 15-year trend, one of the longest documented intervals between FTC outbreaks in the state. Continue reading “Forest tent caterpillar: surveys, prediction, and history”

Trapping for non-native beetles

By Mike Hillstrom, forest health specialist, Fitchburg. Michael.hillstrom@wisconsin.gov; (608) 513-7690

A Lindgren funnel trap hung to collect beetles near Green Bay, WI. Photo: Mike Hillstrom

Scott Schumacher, an insect trapper for the Wisconsin DNR’s forest health team, will spend this summer hunting for non-native beetles using funds provided by the U.S. Forest Service. The survey is particularly focused on non-native bark and ambrosia beetles, which are potentially harmful to Wisconsin forests. In early May, Schumacher hung Lindgren funnel traps at 12 sites in Wisconsin which he will be checking throughout the season. Traps were placed at high-risk sites in wooded areas near large commercial port entries on Lake Michigan and near pallet and other waste-packaging recycling companies. Although preventing the arrival of non-native species is always top priority, early detection and rapid response (EDRR) to newly-detected infestations is an important strategy to protect forests from damaging invaders.

Ladybugs in your house this spring?

By Linda Williams, forest health specialist, Woodruff. Linda.Williams@wisconsin.gov; 715-356-5211 x232

One option for removal of ladybugs from your home is to flick them into a small container containing soapy water, which will kill them.

One option for removal of ladybugs from your home is to flick them into a small container containing soapy water, which will kill them. Photo: Linda Williams

In the December 2017 edition of Forest Health News, I wrote about ladybugs congregating in or on homes during autumn. Now that winter has finally ended in Wisconsin, ladybugs that spent winter in the walls of your house are emerging, and many of those will accidentally emerge into, not out of, your home. This can create panic or aggravation, depending on you (or your spouse’s) tolerance for insects in the house. Continue reading “Ladybugs in your house this spring?”

Defoliation by larch casebearers

By Linda Williams, forest health specialist, Woodruff, (Linda.Williams@wisconsin.gov), 715-356-5211 x232

The two cigar-shaped, tan objects sticking to the newly expanding needles of this tamarack tree are larch casebearer caterpillars, feeding on the foliage.

The two cigar-shaped, tan objects sticking to the newly expanding needles of this tamarack tree are larch casebearer caterpillars, feeding on the foliage. Photo: Linda Williams

As tamarack needles begin to appear, so do some tiny caterpillars that feed on them. Larch casebearers defoliate tamarack trees early in the season, first causing the trees to look pale green or yellowish, or even brown if defoliation is severe. This year I have been able to find larch casebearers wherever I look, but so far, I haven’t found any high populations of the insect. Continue reading “Defoliation by larch casebearers”

Region-wide needle tip browning on red pine

Typical appearance of needle tip browning on lower portion of red pine crowns

Red pine with needle tip browning on the lower crown. Photo: Paul Cigan

By Paul Cigan, forest health specialist, Hayward.  Paul.Cigan@wisconsin.gov; 715-416-4920

Although no tree mortality is associated with the condition, widespread needle tip browning on red pine has been observed for the second consecutive year across much of the upper Great Lakes region. The condition is heavier in some places than others, but once in a stand or location, tends to be evenly distributed. Needle tip browning is common on the lower half of mature red pine crowns. On two- to three-year-old needles, the outer half to three-quarters of the needles appear reddish brown to straw-colored while needle bases remain green. Black or dark brown necrotic bands and spots are often present on symptomatic needle tips. Lower crown thinning is also common on symptomatic pine. Newly impacted needles will gradually lighten in color from reddish brown to straw-colored as dead needle tips dry out through the growing season. Continue reading “Region-wide needle tip browning on red pine”

New “Tick App” available

Ticks pose increasing health threats throughout North America

Ticks pose increasing health threats throughout North America. Photo: WI DNR

from the May 2018 edition of RECReport, for the WI DNR Bureau of Parks and Recreation Management

The University of Wisconsin-Madison, a partner in the Midwest Center of Excellence (Center) in Vector-Borne Diseases, has announced that “Tick App” is now available for download. Tick App is a phone application that is part research tool and part educational tool with the goal to transition towards a preventative tool over time.

The Center would like to enroll people, by the app, in their study to determine the risk for tick encounters, assess the success/failure of self-reported prevention strategies, and educate people at the same time. Participation is entirely voluntary. When people download the app, they will go through a sign-up process—and about 5 minutes of questions—so the researchers can assess risk factors for tick exposure.

When people are in the app they can complete daily tick diaries (asking about activities and tick exposure) and can report a tick. Users can even send in an image for identification after the report is completed. For more information on the Tick App, visit http://www.thetickapp.org or tickapp@wisc.edu.

White pine weevil – old and new damage

By Linda Williams, forest health specialist, Woodruff. Linda.Williams@wisconsin.gov; 715-356-5211 x232

The terminal leader of this young white pine was killed by white pine weevil.

The terminal leader of this young white pine was killed by white pine weevil. Photo: Linda Williams

White pine weevil is an insect that can attack and kill the terminal leader on white pine, jack pine, and spruce trees. Terminal leaders killed last year may remain on the tree until spring, although they commonly break off during winter. Adult weevils are now out laying eggs on terminal leaders, just below the expanding buds. After the eggs hatch, the larvae will bore just under the bark of the terminal and feed, moving downward as they progress. As buds expand this spring, they will quickly run out of water and food due to damage caused by larval feeding, and the terminal leader will begin to wilt, curl, and die. Continue reading “White pine weevil – old and new damage”

Figure out when your trees will bloom

The Morton Arboretum is releasing information monthly on growing degree days. Plants, insects and fungi all develop at various times depending on temperature. Development will speed up or slow down depending on the rise and fall of temperature. Several studies have worked to understand the relationship between heat and development. These studies and information from them help anticipate flowering of trees and shrubs and the emergence of insects based on how many growing days have accumulated. Continue reading “Figure out when your trees will bloom”