An invasive species of moths will be getting sprayed on select parts of Vancouver Island this spring.
In order to keep their populations down, the federal government has approved spraying three areas on the island, including 402 hectares at the easternmost tip of Cowichan lake, 1,068 hectares south of Nanoose Bay to the northern boundary of the City of Nanaimo, and 50 hectares south of Thetis Lake Regional Park and the Trans-Canada Highway.
The government has not stated what pesticide it will be using to kill the moths, but has stated it is not harmful to humans, pets, trees, or other insects.
Lymantria moths— which were previously called Gypsy moths, are small, white/brown moths that feed on trees and crops— are an invasive species that the federal government says poses a threat to ‘trees such as Garry oak, arbutus, red alder, aspen, cottonwood, maple, orchard fruit trees, nut trees and many species of urban ornamental trees.’
They were brought to the island via vehicles and equipment from eastern North America. They are also known to affect things other than trees, and make nests inside of furniture, camping equipment, trailers, and firewood.
Residents in the planned spray areas are invited to submit their comments to amend the existing pesticide use by March 22nd, 2022.
More information about the moths are available here.