gypsy moth

noun

Definition of gypsy moth

: an Old World tussock moth (Lymantria dispar) that was introduced about 1869 into the U.S. and has a grayish-brown mottled hairy caterpillar which is a destructive defoliator of many trees

Examples of gypsy moth in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Ohio Reynoldsburg: State officials plan to begin aerial treatments aimed at disrupting gypsy moth mating on more than 61,000 acres in 12 counties across the state. USA TODAY, "Black Union regiment flag, Notorious BIG, Pikachu the mini pony: News from around our 50 states," 12 June 2019 Rainy weather can sicken gypsy moths and box elder bugs, making them more vulnerable to disease. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Yeah, we know it's been cold and rainy in Wisconsin. Blame the jet stream.," 17 June 2019 On the bright side, gypsy moths, which can cause widespread defoliation of trees, and box elder bugs, which like to crawl into homes in the fall to find a winter shelter, are in bad shape. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Yeah, we know it's been cold and rainy in Wisconsin. Blame the jet stream.," 17 June 2019 The woods around me are almost all tulip poplar since the gypsy moths wiped out the oaks years ago. Ellen Nibali, baltimoresun.com, "What other native trees should I plant?," 13 June 2019 The gypsy moth is a non-native, invasive species that feeds on the leaves of more than 300 different trees and shrubs and can permanently damage or kill them. USA TODAY, "Black Union regiment flag, Notorious BIG, Pikachu the mini pony: News from around our 50 states," 12 June 2019 Connecticut suffered significant gypsy moth damage in 1981, when 1.5 million acres were defoliated. Denise Coffey, Courant Community, "Salvaging White Oaks Lost To Gypsy Moth Devastation," 21 May 2018 Efforts to eradicate the invasive species proved fruitless: the gypsy moth remains a scourge to this day. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "These 19th-century astronomical drawings show the beauty of cosmos," 30 Sep. 2018 The gypsy moth is the adult stage of one of the caterpillar species that threaten tree canopies. New York Times, "Where Have All the Gypsy Moths Gone?," 11 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gypsy moth.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of gypsy moth

1819, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

18 Aug 2019

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The first known use of gypsy moth was in 1819

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More Definitions for gypsy moth

gypsy moth

noun

English Language Learners Definition of gypsy moth

: a type of moth whose caterpillar does great damage to trees by eating the leaves

gypsy moth

noun

Kids Definition of gypsy moth

: a moth whose caterpillar does great damage to trees by eating the leaves

More from Merriam-Webster on gypsy moth

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with gypsy moth

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about gypsy moth

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