The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) and partner organizations are planning to tackle gypsy moth infestations in northeastern Minnesota this summer. In anticipation of the treatments, the department is inviting people to learn about the effort at open houses to be held March 13 in Duluth.

It is one of America's most destructive tree pests, gypsy moth has caused millions of dollars in damage to forests as it has spread from New England to Wisconsin in recent decades. The pests are common in Wisconsin and are now establishing themselves in northeastern Minnesota.

MDA maintains a monitoring program to watch for start-up infestations, and when an infestation is found, the department conducts aerial treatments to slow their spread. In 2013, MDA found infestations covering approximately 53,000 acres. The department is now developing treatment plans for the affected areas, including all of the city of Duluth, West Duluth and parts of Hermantown, Proctor, Canosia Township, Rice Lake Township, and Morse Township (north of Ely).

MDA will host two open houses at the following locations to share information with citizens about the threat gypsy moths pose to the environment, and how officials plan to protect urban forest areas.

Thursday, March 13, 11:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.

City Center West – West Duluth Library

5830 Grand Ave., Duluth


Thursday, March 13, 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Duluth Heights Community Recreation Center

33 W. Mulberry St., Duluth

Residents in the proposed Ely treatment area will receive information by mail.

Over the years, MDA has successfully treated dozens of gypsy moth infestations across eastern Minnesota from Grand Portage to the Twin Cities to Houston County. These treatments slow the spread of gypsy moth, saving communities and homeowners money and protecting the health of the state’s forests. Unfortunately, the number and intensity of localized infestations continues to rise as the main population of gypsy moths moves into the state.

For more information on the proposed treatments, Click Here