Gypsy moth treatments take flight in Va. next week

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Local,Virginia

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — The U.S. Forest Service is teaming up with the state to slow the spread of gypsy moths in southwest Virginia.

Starting next week, aircraft will take to the skies to begin treating 30,500 acres in Carroll, Bland, Floyd, Patrick and Wythe counties. The Forest Service says the treatments should be completed in a day or two.

The aircraft will fly about 150 feet above the tree tops. They'll release tiny green flakes containing gypsy moth pheromone normally produced by female moths prior to mating. The pheromone cloud created by the treatments distracts the males and prevents them from mating.

The Forest Service says the flakes pose no threat to other species.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is partnering with the Forest Service on the treatments.

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