Asked on Jun 04, 2016

Bark eating bugs on my crepe myrtle

by Vicki
They cluster. This is a very large mature tree, beautiful last year. I don't want to lose it!
Does anyone have idea what they are. I've sprayed.
  8 answers
  • Bryan's Workshop Bryan's Workshop on Jun 05, 2016
    Hello, that is bark lice. You should google it to double check, but they will not hurt your tree. They are actually considered helpful. Don't be alarmed.
    • See 5 previous
    • Vicki Vicki on Jun 05, 2016
      I replied to someone else, but don't see it..maybe it got flung into cyberspace! I sprayed, freaking out that I would lose this huge tree that I love! Bugs are gone but the tree bark now has odd color to it! Extension agency is not local, but will take more pics and perhaps email them with a letter of explanation. Thank you everyone for the help and suggestions!
  • Dawn Dawn on Jun 05, 2016
    We have them each year on our mature crepe myrtle and they cause no harm. They're pretty cool! You can herd them with a touch.
  • Debbie Debbie on Jun 05, 2016
    Call your local county extension agent to ask about this. They can tell you what, if anything, you need to do.
  • Lisa Falkenthal Lisa Falkenthal on Jun 05, 2016
    They are, I believe, called webworms.
  • Rozmund Rozmund on Jun 05, 2016
    Maybe this link will help - - good want to get these suckers before they start mating big time...don't laugh...use your shop vac and suck them up...I did this with wasps in our basement..took me a week but we got every last one...did not use chemicals - all safe and best - it really works...Roz
  • Suellen Hintz Suellen Hintz on Jun 05, 2016
    This article has a great photo of treelice so you can decide if you do have them...very helpful article.
  • Wanda.ll Wanda.ll on Jun 06, 2016
    Maybe they are just cleaning the bark. We have some that get on our oak trees and that is what they do, Harmless. But I would ask county agent about them
  • Sam Sam on Sep 17, 2016
    per Tree Cattle: Tree cattle nymphs appear dark gray with pale yellow banding between abdominal segments. Adults have shiny black wings that are held tent-like over their abdomens. Tree cattle perform a valuable function in consuming excess accumulations of fungi, algae, dead bark and other materials that occur on tree trunks and large limbs. Tree cattle do not eat leaves or the bark of the tree, nor do they damage the tree by boring into the bark and control measures are not recommended for these insects.