This page was updated February 2009
Can You Guess It??
Helping Nebraskans enhance their lives through research-based education.
DID YOU GUESS IT??
Inspect, remove and dispose of bagworms.
Crush the bags or place in trash in a sealed
bag. Don't discard bags on the ground.
ANSWER: The mummified remains of a female bagworm with eggs
Bagworms have become an increasing problem in Lancaster County, Nebraska and surrounding areas. Their appetite for evergreens can quickly kill even mature trees. They also feed on shade, ornamental, fruit trees and shrubs and perennial flowers.
Bagworm eggs hatch in late May and early June. Young bagworms are very small and hard to see. Once they find a plant to feed on, they begin to build their bag. The bag encases their body. In August, the mature larvae then attach their bag to a branch with a strong band of silk and begin to pupate. Adult males emerge in September. They look like small moths like clear wings. The adult female does not have wings and never leaves the bag. Once mated, the female lays eggs in the bag. She will die in the bag, mummified around the egg mass that overwinters until the following June. The overwintering bags contain as many as 300 to 1000 eggs each. (photo above).
You should be inspecting landscape plants now for bagworms. For a lot of photos and information on how to control bagworms, visit:
Bagworm Control from UNL Extension in Lancaster County