Fly may be depleting U.S. giant silk moths | Science News



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Fly may be depleting U.S. giant silk moths

8:15pm, October 18, 2004

Some of the giant silk moths of North America are taking a beating because an early 20th-century attempt to control another insect went bad, researchers in Massachusetts suggest.

Cecropia moths, with wing spans of up to 5 inches, fall prey in substantial numbers to a parasitic fly first brought to the United States to rein in gypsy moths, report George H. Boettner and Joseph S. Elkinton of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and Cynthia Boettner of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Turners Falls, Mass. In a controversial article in the December Conservation Biology, the researchers propose that attacks by the imported fly, Compsilura concinnata, may be an overlooked factor in what seem to be population d

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