Overwintered Bagworm Eggs Have Hatched and Caterpillars Are Feeding

1st Instar Bagworms on Arborvitae

Overwintered common bagworm (Thyridopteryx ephemeraeformis) eggs have hatched in southwest Ohio and 1st instar caterpillars have settled to feed and construct their characteristic sac-like bags.  A percentage of the tiny 1st instar caterpillars produce a strand of silk upon hatching to catch the wind and “balloon” to new locations.  This behavior is one of the reasons bagworms often appear on hosts that were not infested last season.

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Authors
Joe Boggs