The B.C. government has finalized plans and a permit has been issued to conduct aerial-spray treatments in the Courtenay area in the spring of 2021.
The aerial-spray is in an effort to prevent gypsy moth populations from becoming established, while also minimizing the risk they pose to forests, farms, orchards and trees.
The 187-hectare treatment area is located around Highway 19A, between Rennison Rd and Veterans Memorial Parkway.
Data and observation over the past several years show “clear evidence” that gypsy moth populations are becoming established in the proposed treatment area, according to the B.C. Government.
“In 2018, a 94-hectare area within the 2021 project boundary was treated, but a residual population of gypsy moths survived just outside the treatment area,” reads a statement from the B.C. Government.
The moth — described as invasive — could spread to other areas of the province by attaching egg masses to vehicles and other materials, says the Province.
The Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development has received a pesticide-use permit (Permit No. 738-0032-21/24) to aerial spray 187 hectares of agricultural, residential and commercial properties with a naturally occurring biological agent.
“Large gypsy moth populations have defoliated sections of forests…in recent years,” notes the B.C. Government.
The ministry is planning up to four applications of Foray 48B between April 15 and June 30, 2021, to control the moth. Foray 48B is used in organic farming and has been approved for the control of gypsy moth larvae in Canada since 1961.
To learn more about gypsy moths, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/gypsymoth, or call 1 866 917-5999.