Another day with only a small quantity of sap.
We continue to work in the woods doing pipeline maintenance. We are checking our trees for egg masses of the forest tent caterpillar. We have been infested for three years and have been keeping them under control by using an organic spray that only affects caterpillars. We collected one egg mass and set in a warm place to hatch. About 200 caterpillars appeared so it only takes 4 or 5 egg masses on a small tree to produce enough caterpillars to completely denude the foliage. Trees can withstand two to three years or of heavy defoliation but it weakens the tree and lowers the sugar content in the sap.We will have to spray some parts of our sugar bush for another year. Just to reiterate this organic spray does not affect honey bees or other insects.
The picture shows what an egg mass looks like with some of the recently hatched caterpillars. They actually grow quickly to more than an inch in length and are voracious feeders.
Warm weather in the forecast for tomorrow so we are hoping for a large sap flow.