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Day 6 – The attack of the small green caterpillars

Carbon tower small MJohanssonCarbon tower. Photo by Margareta JohanssonWhen you look around in the Abisko area in the middle of July this year, you can really think that it is spring time. There are large areas with birches without any leaves. The caterpillars of the autumnal moth (Epirrita autumnata) are eating the leaves.

Today we decided to walk down to one tower that are measuring carbon dioxide, as a major break out of the Epirrita that has occurred this year, can affect the carbon balance of an area, to see how much of the birches were effected around the tower.
The trees close to the tower measuring carbon dioxide were not yet affected by the insect outbreak, but considering the vast number of caterpillars in the forest, most likely it is just a matter of time before they find this green treasure.
In the evening we finished weighing the last samples of vegetation removal and started to pack for our return journey tomorrow.
Caterpillar small MJohanssonCaterpillars. Photo by Margareta Johansson Epirrita Birches small MJohanssonEpirrita Birches. Photo by Margareta Johansson