By Anna Ellis •
Published: 03 Feb 2024 • 16:51
Early warning in Bigastro: Processionary caterpillars emerge. Image: DeRebus / Shutterstock.com.
MeteOrihuela has issued a warning for the municipality of Bigastro in Alicante, indicating the early presence of processionary caterpillars over the last weekend in January.
These caterpillars, which can be potentially dangerous for dogs, are appearing earlier than usual due to rising temperatures associated with the arrival of spring.
While contact with processionary caterpillars can cause irritation in non-allergic individuals, it can be potentially fatal for dogs.
The early emergence of these caterpillars is attributed to climate change, and their presence has been noted not only in Bigastro but also on the Cruz de la Muela Trail in Orihuela.
Dog owners, particularly those walking their pets in green areas, should be cautious.
The Thaumetopoea pityocampa, or processionary caterpillar, is a defoliating lepidopteran species commonly found in pine forests in southern Europe, Asia Minor, and northern Africa.
These caterpillars are covered in stinging hairs that can cause irritation in humans and pose a risk to dogs when ingested.
Protective measures should be taken to avoid contact with these caterpillars during this period.
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Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.
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