Caterpillar Pest Control Treatments
You may be inclined to think of caterpillars as a more rural or agricultural pest control issue but it has become increasingly common in recent years for caterpillar pest control to be deployed in the Greater London area.
Despite the comparative lack of green space in the Greater London area – infestations of caterpillars have been notable in the spaces that are available. Even though these infestations are often seen as an issue you would encounter in a back garden, caterpillars have also made their way into communal gardens and the capital’s parks.
Even though these spaces may be communal, caterpillars can invariably move into private spaces and cause issues there too. Once there, caterpillars will cause health and environmental concerns, which can affect humans and domestic pets, as well as garden plants and trees.
Caterpillar Pest Control: The horror stories
You may or may not have seen in recent months, reports have surfaced in the media regarding increasing numbers of caterpillar infestations – especially in London parks – but not limited to the more communal spaces of the capital.
Often these reports allude to the serious environmental impact caterpillars can have on the local habitat. However, there has been an increased focus on the potential health risks that they bring with them.
Along with the damaging environmental effects, caterpillars have been known to cause asthma attacks, rashes, and vomiting amongst those who have come into close contact with the little furry critters. With this, there has been a renewed concern that those who would otherwise be unaware that they may be allergic to the caterpillars, will discover that they are in fact disagreeable to them.
Besides the health concerns, the environmental impact of any caterpillar infestation can also severely damage a number of tree and plant species. It has been reported that one particular species of the caterpillar – the Oak Processionary Moths (OPM) – are known for eating the bark of an oak tree, along with the leaves too, leaving the trees vulnerable to disease. Invariable this leads to issues for birds and other insects who rely on the oak trees for food and shelter.
Caterpillar Pest Control: What to do if you have an infestation
Within the next month or so, you’ll most likely begin to see caterpillars making an appearance in your local park or back garden. This will continue well into the summer, which means that if you do not take swift steps to eradicate the infestation, it will only get more pervasive.
Insecticides – Often seen as the go-to remedy for any caterpillar infestation, insecticides are not always the most effective. This is due to the type which is deployed and which species of the caterpillar is present. There is also the added threat that insecticides can be harmful to the local environment if used incorrectly.
Destroying the nest – In much the same way as destroying a wasp or bees nest, this is sometimes effective but can also make things worse. Similar to spraying insecticides, the effective removal and management of nests and their local habitat are dependent upon the correct identification of nests and the proportionate application of removal techniques. Professional pest control companies, with direction from the appropriate local authorities, are responsible for the safe removal of nests.
Caterpillars, especially Oak Permissionary Moths, are specifically threatening the Greater London area. The Forestry Commission has identified large parts of west, south-west, north and central London as an infected area and 2018 was a particularly bad year for the spread of this type of caterpillar.
With the threat, both to the environment and local population, increasing each year, it is vital that any identification is reported to a professional pest control company. In doing so, you are ensuring that the correct control and eradication methods are applied to a problem such as a caterpillar pest control.