Gypsy Moth in British Columbia


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Gypsy Moth Facts


General Information

The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (FLNRO) has taken the lead role in managing infestations of the North American strain of European gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) in British Columbia. The Ministry is working together with the Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Environment, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), the Canadian Forest Service, provincial and local health authorities, and local governments of communities where gypsy moth have been located.

Gypsy moths are a threat to B.C.'s ecology and economy.  The insect attacks both natural forests and urban trees, and in 1999 resulted in the U.S. threatening to refuse shipments of trees and plants from B.C.’s nurseries without additional inspection certificates.  The presence of moths in a jurisdiction poses a quarantine threat and potential trade restrictions for products like Christmas trees, logs with bark, nursery plants, and challenges on transportation (trucks may need agricultural inspections).

The FLNRO's gypsy moth eradication program provides a site and condition specific treatment response for each location and uses various levels of mass trapping, ground spraying and aerial spraying to control this introduced pest. The situation specific use of these varied techniques has been successful in the 20 years they have been used. There have been no established moth populations in B.C. since the moths were first discovered in 1978.

Ongoing detection programs and prompt eradication measures conducted by Canadian and U.S. agencies have prevented this invasive pest from becoming established in western North America.

Contact Tim Ebata if you have comments on the presentation of this information.

Section phone: (250) 387-8739
Section fax: (250) 387-2136

BC Ministry of Forests, Lands & Natural Resource Operations
Resource Practices Branch
P.O. Box 9513 Stn. Prov. Gov.
Victoria, BC
V8W 9C2