Rural – Jersey Country Life Magazine


Islanders are being urged to stay clear of Oak Processionary Moth caterpillars, whose toxic hairs can cause allergic reactions and skin irritation, following reports of the insects near First Tower. 

So far, the caterpillars have been found at St Andrew’s Park, a private garden, and a number of other locations in the area.

Caterpillars of the Oak Processionary Moth emerge between May and July to feed before turning into adult moths. At this time of year, the caterpillars collectively build nests covered in their toxic hairs which are shed into the oak tree, or blown in the wind, making the area hazardous. 

Contact with the hairs can cause skin irritation, allergic reaction, intense itchiness, painful rashes, eye problems, sore throat and breathing difficulties.

Caroline Maffia, from Environment and Consumer Protection, said: ‘You can spot them in oak trees, where they are often clustered together. They have a grey body and dark head, and the older caterpillars have a central dark stripe with paler lines down each side. 

‘The nests look like cream, brown or black fibrous webbing on the trunks, branches and forks of branches.’

‘Islanders should avoid handling them, standing downwind of them, or too close to infested trees. The hairs can cause a number of health concerns, and if you’re worried about a rash or other reaction then please contact your GP. 

‘Pets may also be affected, so please keep dogs away.’

The Government’s Infrastructure, Housing and Environment team are working to remove as many of the nests as possible.

Islanders can report sightings to detailing the date, time and location. 

Further details of the caterpillars, how to identify them, and their potential risk to human health can be found online on



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest News

Rural Post Sign Up

Join our mailing list and stay up to date with the latest news.

* indicates required

Crosby Media and Publishing Ltd will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Please let us know all the ways you would like to hear from us:

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.

Related Posts