Forest tent caterpillar
Through our usual astute management abilities, we have skillfully reduced another forest tent caterpillar outbreak to a mere shadow of its former self. This simple gesture of kindness is unappreciated by wine makers everywhere (or at least the one in Duluth) as caterpillars are in shorter supply than the last year thus reducing their production of armyworm wine. Most of the tent caterpillars completed feeding and spun cocoons by the end of June. The moth flight will occur in seven to ten days but should be pretty small and not much of a problem. The defoliation is very patchy and scattered across northern Minnesota but still quite noticeable in many locations with some heavy defoliation in locations around Remer, Cass Lake, Bemidji, Grand Rapids, Cloquet and across the Iron Range from Hibbing to Virginia.
Populations should be even smaller next year but it wouldn?t be unusual to still have some localized hot spots next summer.