Belfast Telegraph

Natural world is a wonder to be admired, not feared

Editor's Viewpoint

Sometimes the natural world can look like something out of an apocalyptic sci-fi film. That certainly was the feeling of some people who saw tiny black caterpillars devouring the foliage of large shrubs in Co Down. Their appearance was accompanied by a huge wispy web covering the plants, giving rise to concerns that these were some sort of new invasive species.

But according to experts, these caterpillars, known as orchard ermine, are not only indigenous but common annually. It is just that no one really seemed to notice them before. These tens of thousands of insects are just another wonder of the natural world to be admired rather than feared.

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