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Fall May Look a Little Different this Year. Here’s Why.

Weevils wobble, but they don’t fall down. 

This little monster (black spot about ⅛ of an inch) is named the yellow poplar weevil, and he has leapt from obscurity onto the front page. They are changing our landscape before our eyes, even if it is only temporarily.

Leaves chewed by the weevil

The work of the weevils

They say almost all the poplar trees will survive this year’s attack. In West Virginia, poplar trees make up a big chunk of the forest. There are more poplar trees (by mass) than any other type. So when they all turn brown, it is hard not to notice!

I have seen this to a much lesser extent before, but never really paid any attention.

Well, now I am paying attention, and find it amazing that one of these little weevils (and I only found one on this tree) can eat an off a lot of leaf.

weevils

All eaten up by the weevils!

Will we be missing the golden color the poplar trees to add to the fall pallet? As you can see, some of the damage is completely destroying the leaf, yet on others only the tips have curled.

What will remain when these little guys start to go dormant in July?

Weevil in WV's forests

There’s the little guy himself: the weevil.

I do not know if they will just hang on, all brown and shriveled until fall, or if they will start dropping now. Either way, it will be odd to see this fall, and hopefully it is a one-off occurrence.

 

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