We have these. I think we also have these, but I know we have these.

And when I say “have” I mean “have in quantities far in excess of sufficiency”. As in, a lot more than last year when we thought we had a lot. As in, hundreds of them climbing the wall of one of our sheds alone. As in, crawling up the legs of our Memorial Day weekend guests.

As in, 50% or more defoliation of some of the fruit trees we planted year before last.

We found out the hard way they’re capable of crawling on water — across a pond. Then we found out, by reading an article in the Sunday paper in which my wife’s aunt was quoted as saying this, you can kill them by tossing them in a bucket of soapy water. Surface tension thing, I guess. We tried it. It works. You just have to keep going back to your trees and pulling them off every day. Maybe twice a day.

The chicks, who are now verging on pullet- and cockerel-hood and have taken up residence in the aforementioned shed, seem to like them, but their appetites are overwhelmed. Unlike the caterpillars’.


One thought on “Crawl

  1. They’re so cute it’s hard to believe this: “One outbreak in upstate New York and Vermont began in 2002, with 650,000 acres defoliated in New York and 230,000 acres in Vermont in 2005.” We get a much uglier periodical pest here-Mormon Crickets: that do this: “When a large band crosses a road it can cause a safety hazard by causing distracted revulsion on the part of the driver, by covering windshields in sticky splatter or even by causing the road surface to become slick with their fluids.”


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