Gypsy Moth

Gypsy Moth

Pest of: oak (Quercus sp.), crabapple (Malus sp.), linden (Tilia sp.), poplar (Populus sp.), beech (Fagus sp.), willow (Salix sp.), birch (Betula sp.), sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua), serviceberry (Amelanchier sp.), and hawthorn (Crataegus sp.)

The Bureau of Forestry, in cooperation with the State of Illinois, Department of Agriculture (IDA), has conducted a trapping program since the early 1990's to monitor the progress of this pest into Chicago. The Bureau of Forestry hangs over 64 traps throughout Chicago in a grid system as directed by the IDA. These traps monitor gypsy moth in Chicago and not only remove moths from the breeding population, but also help Forestry identify problem areas.

In 2002 Forestry initiated the much publicized control program of distributing soil and gypsy moth cadavers containing the fungus Entomophaga maimaiga. This fungus kills gypsy moth caterpillars and is an environmentally safe, pro-active treatment which will reduce the overall impact gypsy moth has on Chicago's tree population.

Through the ongoing efforts of the Bureau of Forestry and volunteers from the TreeKeeper program of the Openlands Project, gypsy moth has not caused significant damage within the City of Chicago. 

  • Additional information on the Gypsy moth and annual trapping can be found at the University of Illinois Extension Website:
  • The US Forest Service also maintains an excellent site that tracks the entire history of the Gyspy Moth in the United States: