Western tussock moth—Orgyia vetusta
Tussock moth caterpillars can be identified by their long hairs and colorful tufts. Young larvae are
black with long bristles; older larvae have numerous red and yellow spots, four white tufts of hair, and
many more groups of bristles down their backs.
Caterpillars can defoliate deciduous trees in spring. They may also take small bites out of newly set
or young fruit; these damaged areas later scab over.
Removing egg masses, newly hatched caterpillars, and cocoons
should provide sufficient control in backyard trees. On
deciduous trees, an oil
spray applied in the winter will
kill the egg masses. Spinosad or Bacillus
are available for use in most crops.
tussock moth caterpillar
moth damage to fruit