MADISON, Wis. -

Wisconsin forestry officials said now is the time to search out gypsy moth eggs and destroy them.

Department of Natural Resources forestry health officials said the pests will start hatching over the next few weeks. They're urging homeowners to search their trees, houses, firewood piles, play-sets and any other outdoor surface for the gypsy moths' tell-tale tan, quarter-sized egg masses.

Property owners should spray the eggs with horticultural oil designed to kill them such as Golden Pest Spray Oil. Homeowners also can scrape the masses free and drown them in soapy water.

People shouldn't scrape the masses onto the ground, step on them or break them apart. The DNR's experts said too many eggs will survive.