Forest tent caterpillars

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2006 Infestation


References to caterpillars in academic discussions

  • Paper presented in ARTH 405 on how the caterpillars were creating new public spaces by interrupting traditional pedestrian routes, and how the infested trees represented public art because they caused students and faculty who never knew each other before to gather around in order to collectively witness the unusual phenomenon.


May 2 First discussion appeared, in which Evan Miller misidentified the caterpillars as being gypsy moth caterpillars.
May 3 Second discussion initiated.
May 8 Anti- and pro- caterpillar chalkings appear (partially documented here).
May 8 "LEVITATING CATERPILLARS AHHH!!!!!!" discussion initiated.
May 9 Email sent by Dave Fitzgerald, Horticulturist and Grounds Supervisor, clarifying the situation.
May 19 Some students take matters into their own hands.

Map of infestation centers

The following map points out places to avoid because of extreme concentrations of caterpillars. This was Sunmi Yang's idea. Please add more, but don't delete them as the infestation diminishes, as this will be a permanent record of this historic event.

<googlemap lat="42.712792959940266" lon="-73.20383548736572" zoom="16" type="satellite" height="500"> 42.712808726245186, -73.20517659187317, Tree in front of Morty's house 42.713045220338415, -73.20627093315125, Bit of sidewalk outside of Faculty House, just to the side of Park Street

42.712075588829215, -73.20663571357727,

Transylvanian lamppost behind Bronfman.

42.71278507678631, -73.20323467254639,

Furry handrail at Hopkins.

42.71499232078503, -73.20268213748932,

Nothing But Caterpillars

42.714913491993975, -73.20279479026794,

Don't sit here

42.71257223125078, -73.20311665534973,

Don't drink out of this

42.713210765667455, -73.20606172084808,

Lilac bush covered in caterpillars

42.714661239189766, -73.2090175151825, Tree in front of Police Station is covered with them, and they're hanging everywhere. 42.712296319285, -73.20760130882263, North wall of JRC, electrical transformer and deciduous trees between JRC and Brooks House 42.71246186661166, -73.20864200592041, Trees in back of Perry House. Also the volleyball net posts. 42.71664770226656, -73.20166826248169, They hang down from the treetops all the way to road level at this intersection. 42.714831, -73.203862, The Campus Mail Office = Worst Infestation Ever. 42.71234756017138, -73.20483863353729, Large trees in front of west were completely covered. </googlemap>