Insect Experts Taking Advantage of Winter Freeze

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freezing-temperatures-spring-marchWhile most people hit by the unusually low temperatures in much of the country express frustration and discomfort at the conditions and inconveniences the freezing temperatures brought with them, entomologists, foresters and naturalists took advantage of the opportunity to impact some of the invasive insects that have been threatening popular tree and plant species. These professionals play an important role in protecting those plants that are important in many areas of life.

Insects which include the hemlock woolly adelgid and the southern pine beetle have weakened forests from Cape May in New Jersey to Litchfield County in Connecticut. According to a science article published in The New York Times, the insects that are introduced into the environment, along with those that are native to the regions, are uncannily adept at surviving during the cold winter months. Even so, they have a breaking point, and it was reached during the recent winter freeze.

In spite of the excitement experienced by the professionals when the minus 4 or 5 degrees Fahrenheit lethal temperature for the woolly adelgid was met and then surpassed, they warn that not all of the population will be killed, and future populations will need to be controlled. It comes down to knowing how to control the populations, not in eradicating them. With concerns over different destructive species in different areas of the country, the widespread cold temperatures is hoped to have brought some relief, where milder winters have caused more significant problems in the recent past.

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