UK: Oak Processionary Moth identified in Derbyshire

Inspectors have confirmed a number of oak trees in the Long Eaton area of Derbyshire are infested with Oak Processionary Moth (OPM).

Since this outbreak in Derbyshire is outside of OPM’s established area, the intention is to implement a management program to eradicate the pest from this area.

At the same time, surveillance work is ongoing to investigate and direct control measures to prevent the further spread of the pest; the surrounding area will be monitored through a program of ground surveys and pheromone trapping.

Defra is urging members of the public in Long Eaton and surrounding areas across Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire to be vigilant and check for signs of their own oak trees being infested, including those recently planted.

The Association urges members working in this area to exercise caution and to report any sightings via the TreeAlert portal, email, or telephone at 0300 067 4442.

Identification of Oak Processionary Moth caterpillars:

  • Black head, grey body (with a dark stripe running down the center), and long, white hairs
  • 2cm long when fully grown
  • Usually move nose-to-tail in a procession

Identification of Oak Processionary Moth nests:

  • Range in size from golf ball to rugby ball-sized and may be found anywhere on the tree
  • Unlikely to be found on any tree or shrub species other than oak
  • White-colored when fresh but soon become discolored and brown
  • Nests stay attached to the tree for many months

Please see Forestry Commission infographic for images of the caterpillar and nest.

For more information:
British Association of Landscape Industries

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