Canadian Forest Service Publications

Forest Tent Caterpillar. 2018. Cooke, B.J.; Fidgen, J.G.; MacQuarrie, C.J.K.; Roe, A.D. Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service. Great Lakes Forestry Centre, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Frontline Express 83. 2p.

Year: 2018

Issued by: Great Lakes Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 39147

Language: English

Series: Frontline Express (GLFC - Sault Ste. Marie)

Availability: PDF (download)

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Plain Language Summary

Forest tent caterpillar is a native defoliator that causes extensive damage to hardwoods throughout Canada. Outbreaks occur every 9-13 years and usually last 1-2 years. Tree mortality only occurs when outbreaks occasionally last for up to six years. During an infestation, the large number of caterpillars can be a nuisance. Here we explain the life cycle, natural control mechanisms, and suggest what can be done by homeowners or forest managers. We also include photos to identify the three native tent caterpillar species, as well as the “friendly fly”, which is associated with outbreaks because it feeds on tent caterpillar larvae.