The gypsy moth has four stages in its life cycle, and it can take a total of 12 weeks to reach adulthood. The adult gypsy male moth has a feathery body, and is quite plump. They have antennae. Their color can range from light beige to dark brown. They have black colored bands on their wings. Their wings spread from three-fourth inch to one and half inches. The adult moths become very active from July to August.
The adult female moth has both white and brown markings which go zigzag on the wings. The female moth has narrow antennae. As the female moths have very big and heavy bodies they cannot fly. The female moths release pheromone by which the male moths are attracted. A male moth has a capability to mate with numerous females. After the production of the eggs, the female dies. The eggs are laid in a tan colored mass typically. The eggs that are laid during the months of July and August tend to hatch the next spring in April or May. The egg masses can also be found on inanimate objects outside the home environment.
The caterpillars of the gypsy moth are dark colored and hairy. They have five blue dot pairs and six red dot pairs on their back. This is the classic characteristic they exhibit that no other moth or caterpillar has. The caterpillar actively feeds during the day on leaves of the plant. When it is transforming into a pupa, it is inactive and in a cocoon.
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