Stuart1960's picture

Unknown insects

Observed: 10th June 2010 By: Stuart1960
Unknown insects

found in a country lane near Keswick. Only one tree affected but was completely covered by what looked like a giant white spidersweb. There were thousands of small caterpillar like creatures crawling all over the tree. Are these ermine moths and do they damage the tree?

Species interactions

No interactions present.


Martin Harvey's picture


Do you know what the tree species was? If so that might help narrow down the moth identification.

These small ermine moth larvae are certainly capable of defoliating leaves from trees or sections of hedge/scrub, but in most cases they only cause short-term damage to the plant, which generally recovers the next year.

Entomologist and biological recorder

DavidHowdon's picture


If I remember correctly it was a birch.