Invasion of the caterpillars... and their webs

Millions of caterpillars have been draping their webs over trees, shrubs and even gravestones in parts of Britain.

Silk webs from Ermine moth caterpillars
Trees draped in the webs in Cambridge. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Cherry trees on Jesus Green in Cambridge have had their leaves stripped and been left covered in cobwebs.

The creatures are ermine moth caterpillars and they appear to be having a bumper year. They emerge as the weather warms up and may be flourishing because the harsh winter killed off predators like ladybirds.

Silk webs from Ermine moth caterpillars
The caterpillars in Cambridge. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Southend Cemetery in Essex has been invaded too with cobwebs spun around the trees and the gravestones.

Silk webs from Ermine moth caterpillars
The scene at Southend Cemetery Credit: ITV News Anglia