MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Forest tent caterpillars are busting out in Minnesota but experts say this year's defoliation is not yet "the big one."
Department of Natural Resources forest health specialist Jana Albers says it's leading up to a bigger outbreak in a few years.
The DNR is seeing an uptick in the forest tent caterpillar population in Minnesota's northern counties this year. In west-central counties, the insects have been in outbreak mode for several years.
The caterpillars develop in cycles over the course of decades or more. They set a record in 2002-03, stripping 7.5 million acres of trees of their leaves in central and northern Minnesota. Fortunately, affected trees almost always recover.
The Star Tribune reports the DNR will begin aerial surveys next week to track the caterpillars and other pests.
All content © Copyright 2001 - 2014 WorldNow and KTTC, a Quincy station.
Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Jodi Neyens at (507) 280-5104. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at email@example.com.