Mullica Township trees suffered the most damage of any town’s trees in the state due to gypsy moths, a survey by the Department of Agriculture found.
New Jersey as a whole showed minimal tree damage from the leaf-eating moths, a release by the department states.
The survey was performed in July.
Overall 1,068 acres of trees in 21 municipalities in 10 counties received moderate to heavy damage. Mullica Township alone was responsible for 344 of those acres, with 281 acres showing moderate defoliation and 63 acres showing heavy defoliation.
Hamilton Township had 58 acres of defoliated land.
“Two to three consecutive years of significant defoliation can kill an otherwise healthy tree,” the release states. “However, any gypsy moth defoliation can make trees more susceptible to other damage that can lead to the death of the tree. Oak trees are the preferred host for gypsy moths, but the caterpillars can be found feeding on almost any tree in the vicinity.”