In late June, the U.S. Forest Service and Illinois Department of Agriculture will be spraying an aerial treatment in part of Wheaton to help stop the spread of gypsy moths, now known as spongy moths (lymantria dispar). These moths are one of the most damaging forest and tree pests in the U.S., responsible for millions of acres of defoliation annually.
To prevent the spread of these moths, a product will be applied by planes that will fly at a low altitude over part of our community as they spray an aerial application. The product used is a non-toxic mating disruption pheromone that does not harm humans or other living things; rather, the pheromone makes it difficult for male spongy moths to find female moths, thereby disrupting mating and preventing their spread. The City is helping the Illinois Department of Agriculture share information about this program so that residents are not alarmed to see planes flying lower than usual in our area. We will provide additional information before this spraying takes place.
You can read more about this program at https://www.slowthespread.org/pages/outreach.