MAISRC Research Update

Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center


There seems to be some confusion about the caterpillar species we are seeing, so here are some interesting caterpillar facts.


There are 2 main species of tent caterpillar in our area.  Eastern tent and forest tent caterpillar.  The eastern tent caterpillars are the ones who get together and make a large white silken nest in your tree.  They often pick fruit trees or other ornamental type trees.  They also seem to prefer smaller isolated trees and bushes in ditches and along fence rows.


The forest tent caterpillar does not make this nest. Forest tent moths tend to lay their eggs in bigger trees, most commonly basswood and ornamental trees, but will also chew up oaks and hardwoods.  


The chemical we use will kill both species, BUT unfortunately, we cannot effectively control both species with a single application.  Eastern tent caterpillars hatch out a week or two earlier than the forest tent.  So if we spray when the eastern caterpillars hatch, we will be too early for the forest tent caterpillar.  By the time we spray for forest tent, the eastern tent are nearly finished feeding.


The attached picture shows the two species side by side.  The forest tent is on top of the picture and has hour glass shaped spots where as the eastern tent has a solid white or yellowish line along the top of its back.


If you have the white nests and they are low enough to reach, you can spray them with a contact insecticide from your local supply store, or if you really want to get revenge, dump some boiling water on them!


 To find out more about the spray used go to the website:

Muskie Issues

Please forward this on to your lake members, MN voters and anti-muskie stocking fisherman.  While the MNDNR has temporarily suspended stocking of new Otter Tail County lakes with muskie, you all are still on the target list for the future.


Just consider Gull Lake, seven years ago they were told their lake would not get muskie because it was a chain of lakes, and muskie could spread to other lakes.  This year Gull Lake had muskie stocked despite the overwhelming objection from their Lake Association, fishermen and others.  And with no scientific facts, (and they remain a "chain of lakes") the MNDNR skirted an EAW petition, and late on a Friday night (5 hours after notifying them of rejection of the EAW, and not allowing time for an appeal) stocked muskie in Gull Lake.  No surprise that MN Outdoor News has called the MNDNRF (fisheries) "bullies".


Please help us get the changes we need at the state legislature.  Support our "no muskie stocking in non-native lakes" position ASAP.  Working together we can protect "everybody's" lakes.


MFFHL Advisory Board


Fall Invasive Species Spot Check

From the DNR


We looked at roughly 115 pieces of equipment between Paul and Little McDonald. We were lucky enough to have one of the zebra mussels sniffing dogs with us which made it go a lot faster. I have attached a few pictures of him in action.


We did not find any adult zebra mussels on the equipment we looked at. The dog did “hit” on a few pieces of equipment on Little McDonald and staff searched the equipment more thoroughly but did not find any zebra mussels. Nicole and I will work on getting a more formal report for our search efforts and provide that to you once it has been finalized.


I cannot thank you enough for getting a list of folks that would allow us to search their equipment, as it made it way more efficient for us.


DNR report: Aquatic invasive species violation rate drops; still 1 in 5 boaters breaking the law


Activities highlighted in the 2013 invasive species of Minnesota report:

  • DNR watercraft inspectors, who inspect boats and equipment at water accesses, conducted 123,000 inspections – an increase of nearly 62 percent since 2011.
  • More than 1,000 lake service providers have received AIS training and permits.
  • During the first full year of its operation, the AIS Advisory Committee began conversations with boat manufacturers on design modifications to ensure boats drain water more effectively.
  • Initiated risk assessments on the potential for transporting veligers in residual water of recreational watercraft.
  • Collaborated with the Iowa DNR to install an electric barrier on Lower Gar Lake in Iowa to help prevent the migration of Asian carp into southwestern Minnesota


For more information, and a PDF file of the 2013 annual report, visit

Minnesota Lakes & River Advocates

Find out how Minnesota Lakes & Rivers Advocates (MLR) is working to protect Minnesota water heritage and how you can get involved and stay informed.