23 August 2002

Caterpillar eggs to beat ragwort

A LINCS businessman has come up with a new idea to help control ragwort – still one of the most frequent causes of plant poisoning in horses, sheep and cattle in the UK.

Derek Smith, a former food chemist and microbiologist, is selling packs of the eggs of the Cinnabar moth. The eggs hatch into caterpillars which eat the ragwort plants.

The use of the caterpillars was an "ideal biological control" outside areas grazed by livestock, said Mr Smith. These would still have to be sprayed with herbicide. &#42