How can I get rid of Catapilir Palm worms

    These 1 inch catipilirs drop from the palm trees just before trimming time. They get into the house and burrow themselves in the carpet until they come out as moths. Is there something I can give the tree to kill them?

    0  Views: 5339 Answers: 2 Posted: 13 years ago
    Tags: pests

    2 Answers

    I was going to say there are certain trees that seem to attract them and they breed there but I am guessing you do not want to cut down your trees so I would check like at Lowes or Home Depot for something to kill them inside but you really need to make sure how safe it would be especially for you, children and pets?
    Here's some interesting info from the Cooperative Extension:

    1. I have some pink worms in my house, what are they?
    Palm flower caterpillars are about one inch long, and vary in color from
    a deep pink or pinkish-brown to cream-colored with a greenish tinge.
    The caterpillars are smooth, not spiny or fuzzy. They are commonly
    found rolled up in carpets or upholstery in the home.
    2. Where do the caterpillars come from?
    Palm flower caterpillars eventually turn into moths. Although we rarely see the adult moths,
    they are light tan with two dark circles on the edges of the rear wings. The female moths
    lay eggs on the green flower stalk of fan palms. The eggs hatch into the caterpillars that
    feed on the developing buds and palm flowers. Normally at the time when the flower petals
    are shedding, the caterpillars seek a sheltered place to form the resting stage or “pupa”. In
    natural settings they pupate under the peels or dead fronds of the palm itself. However they
    may be dislodged by high winds, rains, or by pruning. If they can’t find natural materials in
    which to hide, the caterpillars crawl indoors. Once inside a house they chew into carpets,
    upholstery, or even books or paper to create a pupal chamber. They may remain in the
    caterpillar stage for a long time before pupating.
    3. Are palm caterpillars harmful to humans or plants?
    No, palm caterpillars do not bite or carry diseases. Because they feed only on the fan palm
    flowers, they do not damage trees. However, they can damage carpets, or paper products
    in the house.
    4. How do I get rid of palm caterpillars?
    The best way to get rid of palm caterpillars is to remove and dispose of any that have
    entered the house, and then prevent further entry by filling cracks around doors and windows.
    Also, check and repair screens and cover vents.
    If you have fan palms, you may want to have the blossoms pruned early before the moths
    lay their eggs or delay pruning until several weeks after the palm has finished flowering so
    that the caterpillars have pupated. If you have your palms pruned in the spring, leave the
    top five rows of peels so the caterpillars have a place to hide.
    More About Bugs and Their Relatives...
    Palm Flower Caterpillar
    Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, James A. Christenson, Director, Cooperative Extension,
    College of Agriculture, The University of Arizona.
    The University of Arizona College of Agriculture is an equal opportunity employer authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that
    function without regard to sex, race, religion, color, national origin, age, Vietnam Era Veteran’s status, or disability.
    Prepared by Roberta Gibson, Research Specialist, and Dr. Dave Langston, Extension Specialist, University of Arizona
    Cooperative Extension, Maricopa Agricultural Center. For copies contact your local Cooperative Extension office.

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