Environment: Battling the Budworm

There is a biological time bomb in Maine's north woods armed with a fuse set to explode it in a month. Awakened by the warming sun, billions of tiny spruce-budworm larvae will hatch and turn into ravenous caterpillars, ready to eat all the needles and buds on spruce and balsam fir, hemlock and tamarack. Before their appetite is sated, the budworms are expected to chew their way through some 6 million acres of conifers. For 3.5 million of those acres—an area larger than Connecticut—this will be the third straight year of defoliation, and...

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