The spring has been unseasonable warm which has encouraged the caterpillars to emerge in their millions. The prickly armour on the caterpillars are a deterrent for many predators, including man, which has in part enabled the caterpillars to flourish. The hairs of the Oak Processionary Moth are toxic and can be a major irritant to the skin, so our advice is not touch it. If you spot a silken nest please call your local council.
The Brown Tail Moth caterpillars have been making life a misery for visitors to Romney Marsh in Kent and two people have been taken to hospital after experiencing severe reactions. Like the spiky Oak Processionary Moth (pictured right), the Brown Tail Moth caterpillars release hairs into the air which can cause skin irritation and breathing difficulties for asthma sufferers and people with diabetes.
The Ermine moth which has weaved nests over fences, bushes and trees in Shipley Hall Fields, Bradford poses no risk to public health, but its prolific horror movie style nests, as captured in this video by the BBC, have scared many locals away from visiting the park.
Have you spotted any caterpillars or nests? If you have any pictures we would love to see them and we’ll try and identify the species too.
Rentokil Pestaurant returns to the Northern Restaurant & Bar Show from 21st to 22nd
I joined Rentokil just over two years ago and am no stranger to pest control - a number of unwelcome tenants have made my home their home too. Having lived in a number period properties, I learned long ago that the ancient beams, sash windows and chimney breasts are also adored by spiders, insects and furries.