Last year we were inundated with caterpillars of all kinds. What made it such a good year, I’ll never know, but there were tent caterpillars in all the trees and green ones hanging off the branches. If I took a walk around the neighborhood I would have to pick them off my cloths before going inside. My poor maple trees in my front yard were looking very sickly last year and lost some branches over the winter. They still haven’t quite recovered. I really thought about spraying Bt all over the trees, but didn’t more due to laziness than a conscious decision not to spray.
The advantage of last year’s invasion showed up this year. We have more birds here than ever before. I’ve seen three varieties that I hadn’t seen before. Even my husband noticed that the robins were taking over the backyard. The birds are doing a decent job of eating the caterpillars (note all the caterpillars in the beak of the robin). Not perfect, I still have to occasionally pick a caterpillar off my shirt before going inside. That was until the other day. The caterpillars are definitely getting ahead of the birds. I can tell because my patio is covered in caterpillar crap. I wonder what the NPK rating of caterpillar crap is. I could sweep it up and use it as fertilizer.