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Indiana Ag News Headlines
Spongy Moth Treatment Meetings Going Virtual
Indiana Ag Connection - 01/23/2023

The Indiana DNR will host several virtual public meetings this month to discuss proposed spongy moth treatments. Spongy moth (Lymantria dispar) is an invasive insect that can cause tree defoliation and kill trees.

Areas proposed for treatment in 2023 are:

- LaPorte, Kingsbury Btk 23 and Foray 76B

- Kosciusko/Fulton, Beaver Dam MD 23 and SPLAT GM-Organic

- Marshall/Kosciusko, Etna Green MD 23 and SPLAT GM-Organic

- Starke/Marshall, Plymouth MD 23 and SPLAT GM-Organic

At the meetings, personnel from the DNR Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology will discuss the spongy moth life cycle, problems associated with infestations of the insect, available management methods, and proposed treatment options. The representatives will also welcome questions and take comments.

Virtual meetings will be held over Zoom on the following dates and times.

Join us at www.zoom.us Meeting ID: 886 8673 1356 Or join by phone at 312-626-6799 (fees may apply)

- Jan. 24, Noon ET (11 a.m. CT) and 7 p.m. ET (6 p.m. CT)

- Jan. 26, 2023, Noon ET (11 a.m. CT) and 7 p.m. ET (6 p.m. CT)

- Jan. 30, Noon ET (11 a.m. CT) and 7 p.m. ET (6 p.m. CT)

While open to anyone, the meetings will be geared toward residents of and near the areas listed above, which have been identified as having spongy moth infestations and have proposed treatment areas. All meetings will cover the same information. There is no need to attend more than one. Maps of proposed treatment areas can be viewed at on.IN.gov/spongymoth by clicking on the link "2023 Indiana Spongy Moth Treatment Program" at the top of the page.

Written comments may be submitted to Department of Natural Resources, Attn.: Spongy Moth, Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology, 402 W. Washington St., Room W290, Indianapolis, IN, 46204; or emailed to DEPP@dnr.IN.gov. Comments may be submitted until March 3 at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Options for managing spongy moth that will be discussed in detail during the meetings include:

- Taking no action,

- Using mass trapping, which involves setting a large number of traps in a concentrated area to capture male spongy moths before they have a chance to locate and mate with females, or

- Using biological control, which involves the aerial application of the naturally occurring bacteria Btk (Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki), which eliminates spongy moth larvae, or

- Using mating disruption, which involves the aerial application of the spongy moth mating pheromone (or scent) that confuses male spongy moths and prevents mating, or

- Using integrated pest management, which involves the combined use of the above options.

Those unable to attend one of the public meetings may view the meeting's PowerPoint presentation, a series of question-and-answer documents, and maps of the exact areas of concern and further information at on.IN.gov/spongymoth. The presentation will also be available for viewing on YouTube on the DNR channel, youtube.com/idnrvideos, under the Webinars playlist.

To determine if your property is in the treatment areas and for more information about spongy moth, see on.IN.gov/spongymoth.

For more information, call 1-866-NO-EXOTIC (663-9684) or call the local county extension office at 1-888-EXT-INFO (1-888-398-4636).


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