Tent Worms Invade the Ohio Valley, Experts Lend Advice - WTRF 7 News Sports Weather - Wheeling Steubenville

Tent Worms Invade the Ohio Valley, Experts Lend Advice

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WHEELING - If you haven't noticed the 'creepy crawlies' that seem to be invading the Ohio Valley, you will soon.

Caterpillars are everywhere this spring, and experts are offering suggestions on the best way to get rid of the pesky insects.

Eastern tent caterpillars are making their presence known in neighborhoods across the Ohio Valley, and they are not your average caterpillars. They lay their eggs in late Fall and hatch in early Spring, setting up in trees.

Wheeling resident Scott Birkett said he's noticed a ton of them outside, and some even inside his house. "Actually the kids were here yesterday, they had them crawling on them, we were talking about seeing a lot of them, they are everywhere," he said.

Experts said the easiest way to get rid of the pests is to prune the tree limbs where they live and drown them in a bucket of warm, soapy water.

"Get your pruners out, clip that branch off, close to the caterpillar nest, trim it down enough on the branches so that you can dump it into a bucket of soapy water and you'll drown them. It's the easiest way to get rid of the caterpillars. Wait until you can see a lot of them in that little bag and then clip them and dump them into that bucket of water. It may make your tree look a little bit funny, its not going to kill your tree to prune out some of those branches," said Alice Eastman, Director of Schrader Environmental Education Center.

Experts also suggest that you wear gloves if you want to try and get rid of the caterpillars, because they can irritate the skin. If your pets come into contact with the caterpillars or try to eat them, it could cause some slight nausea. Overall, experts say the pests are harmless, just more of a nuisance.

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