Oak Processionary Moth OPM
Oak Processionary Moth OPM
Oak Processionary Oak OPM - Symptoms and Treatment
Oak Processionary Moth

Oak Processionary Oak OPM - Symptoms Treatment and Management

OPM caterpillars are easy to identify because of their behaviour of moving about nose to tail on and around the vicinity of Oak Trees. They build large silky white webbed nests which are also very distinctive. The adults are brown, very similar to other species, and eggs in the Oak Tree in mid to late summer.

The video below was posted on YouTube and shows typical OPM behaviour

The caterpillars pose a two fold risk. The first is that large populations have voracious appetites for oak leaves, and can strip a tree bare in a matter of days.

This places the tree under stress and open to attack from other pests and adverse weather conditions.

Oak Processionary Moth - Managing the Threat

  • Inspecting for old nests in oak trees in high risk areas
  • Destroy the eggs before they hatch in spring
  • Examination for eggs, caterpillars, nests in spring and early summer
  • Infected trees are treated with insecticide
  • Vacuum removal of nests and caterpillars by trained operators
  • Pheromone trapping of Adult Male Moth

The second risk is to human health. The caterpillars have thousands of tiny hairs which can cause allergic reactions on contact. Parents should warn their children to stay away from these caterpillars.

How We Can Help

We will positively identify the species and recommend a schedule of work to manage the outbreak. Your local council will need to be informed as well as the Forestry Commission. Once our Specialist Tree Consultant has positively identified OPM , the tree will need to be treated and nests, eggs, caterpillars will need to be destroyed using strict bio security protocols using licensed waste carriers.

PDFDownload the OPM Identification Guide by the Forestry Commission and give us a call for some free friendly advice.

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