This fall, insects that look like songworms are appearing in various parts of downtown Seoul, including Hangang Park, causing inconvenience to citizens.
According to online on the 23rd, posts about sightings of insects that look like songworms in Hangang Park have been frequently posted on social media recently. Contents such as “While having a picnic, songworms are falling from the sky like rain,” “The Han River walking trail is full of songworms,” and “The camping site is saturated with songworms.”
This bug, which is often mistaken for a caterpillar because of its similar appearance, is the ‘American white moth larva.’ While the ‘love bug’ (red-backed velvet fly), which has been appearing since last year, is a beneficial insect that fertilizes the soil, the larvae of the American white moth are pests that eat the leaves of broad-leaved trees and mainly cause damage to city street trees, landscape trees, and fruit trees in agricultural fields.
At the end of August, the Korea Forest Service raised the outbreak forecast level from ‘Attention’ (Level 1) to ‘Warning’ (Level 3), saying, “An increase in the density of the American white moth is being confirmed across토스카지노 주소 the country, including in Gyeonggi Province, North Chungcheong Province, North Gyeongsang Province, and North Jeolla Province.” Adjusted. This is the first time since 1958 when the American white moth was presumed to have been introduced into Korea. According to Article 6 of the forest pest control regulations, the alert level corresponds to cases where foreign or emergent pests have spread to other areas such as two or more cities or counties, or when damage of more than 50 ha has occurred.
Dr. Kim Min-jung of the Forest Disease and Pest Research Department of the National Institute of Forest Science said, “According to a survey by the Korea Forest Service, the damage rate caused by American white moth larvae has more than doubled from 12% last year to 27-28% this year.” He added, “If there are a lot of larvae this year, there is a risk that it will occur next year as well.” “We have taken steps to increase the forecast level for this outbreak,” he told Yonhap News. He explained, “It is difficult to attribute the increase in population solely to the abnormal
On average, American white moth larvae lay about 600 eggs per female and then die. Normally, a female lays eggs and dies, and the second generation that hatches from these eggs becomes adults. This year, as the fall temperature rises by 1 to 2 degrees compared to previous years, it is estimated that the rate of adults hatching from the eggs laid by the second generation adult American white moth larvae to the third generation adult larvae has increased.
Dr. Kim predicted, “As a result of the simulation, there is a possibility that the number of generations (American white moth larvae) will increase more than before,” and added, “As the population has increased this year, the number of eggs has also increased, so the number of larvae is expected to increase next year compared to the average year.”
Controlling American white moth larvae is not easy. This is due to the nature of the species that lays eggs in large piles on broadleaf tree leaves and hides in insect nests. In particular, in the case of Hangang Park, it is designated as a water supply protection area, so chemicals such as pesticides cannot be used.