Showing posts with the label invasive

Adirondack Nature Detective: Eastern Tent Caterpillar or Gypsy Moth?

By Diane Chase Did you know that Gypsy Moths were introduced in the United States as a failed attempt at creating a silk industry similar to the silkworm? The Gypsy moth was brought from Europe to Massachusetts in 1869 by Leopold Trouvelot in attempt to breed the moths for silk production. A few escaped and now the moths defoliate trees from east to west coasts of the United States. Well, Mother Nature is trying to trip my apple growing by first giving that cute fawn apple leaves to nibble upon and now a bout with tent caterpillars. So what is the difference between the Eastern Tent Caterpillar, Forest Tent Caterpillar and the Gypsy Moth?  Eastern Ten Caterpillar "tent" The Eastern Tent Caterpillar • black heads, light brown body with hairs with a white stripe. • Light stripe down its back bordered with brown and black wavy stripes on either side  There are a series of blue and black dots along the length of the body • Length - about 2 to 2 1/2 inches • The

Be a Nature Detective: Adirondack Invasives: Purple Loosestrife

By Diane Chase There is always a lot of conversation about invasive species in the Adirondack Park. These prolific plants, animals and insect crowd out native plants. Purple Loosestrife is a hardy perennial that was brought to North American by settlers as early as the 1800s as a  medicinal plant to treat such ailments as ulcers, diarrhea, and dysentery.   Without a natural predator the plant chokes out native wetland plants (especially cattails) How does it affect other plants?  1) Its rootball grows in a tangled mass that chokes out other native plants. 2) A single plant can produce as many as 3 million tiny seeds. 3) It is aggressive and grows by root and seed making it nearly impossible to eradicate. What eats Purple Loosetrife?  The golden loosestrife beetle (Galerucella pusilla) is being introduced into the Adirondack Park in hopes to help control this wetland invasive. Thankfully extensive research shows that the beetle will not become a different issue to deal wit