The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has trapped a record 69,400 gypsy moths this year. The previous record high was 27,858 in 2009.
Gypsy moth caterpillars can kill trees and shrubs, causing millions of dollars in damage. Trapping helps the agricultural department get a sense of the size and location of the population to form a plan for treatment.
Trapping for gypsy moths in Minnesota began in 1973, with the first treatment performed in 1980 in St. Paul. Since then, more 767,000 acres have been treated across the state -- mostly in northern Minnesota.