If you are moving, you may need to be on the lookout for the gypsy moth. While a small insect, it has the potential to cause big damage. The federal government has joined with the moving and storage industry to urge those planning to move to help stop the spread of this invasive insect that threatens our nation’s landscape. Moving companies will not move your outdoor items unless you can provide proof of inspection that your outdoor items are free of all gypsy moth life stages.

What is a Gypsy Moth:

The gypsy moth is an invasive insect most commonly found in the northeastern part of the country. They are very destructive to hardwood trees and are often found on items kept outdoors. Gorging themselves on leaves, gypsy moth caterpillars defoliate, weaken and can kill more than 300 different species of trees. Since 1970, gypsy moths have defoliated more than 75 million acres in the United States

What Areas are Under Quarantine for Gypsy Moths:

The main areas of impact are now along the Northeast corridor, as well as the Midwest. The gypsy moth inspection must be performed, and the properly completed and signed checklist must accompany the move, whenever that move starts in the quarantine area and is destined for a location outside the quarantine boundaries. You can check to see if you are in the quarantined area here.

Completing the Inspection and Checklist:

An inspection certification is easy to get. You can either do a Self Inspection or pay a State-licensed inspector to do it for you.

  • Self Inspection: Inspections must not take place more than 5 days prior to traveling to avoid re-infestation. Use this checklist as a guide. Inspect anything exposed to gypsy moths including by not limited to: patio sets, grills, children’s toys, garden equipment, campers, tents, trailers etc. Carefully look over each article, remove any life stages of gypsy moth found, and then destroy them. Give your professional mover a copy of this form or carry it with you on moving day. Be sure to enter the date and place inspected, and then sign at the bottom.
  • USDA-trained Certified Pesticide Inspector: Participating State-licensed pesticide inspectors are trained to inspect for and remove gypsy moth life stages. You should be issued a certificate stating that your items are free of gypsy moth. Give this certificate to the driver. A certificate must accompany your outdoor household items while in transit.

Checking for the gypsy moth is a simple task, but its importance cannot be stressed enough. For more information, go to YourMoveGypsyMothFree.com