Mississauga is launching its annual Integrated Pest Management program to help reduce the number of gypsy moth caterpillars in the city. This invasive insect causes tree destruction by feeding on the leaves of oak and other deciduous trees. After repeated defoliation, trees may die or become so weakened that they are vulnerable to secondary infestations.
In an attempt to boost public involvement, the City has added an Interactive Treatment Map and a Reporting Form this year.
The Interactive Treatment Map will display the publicly-owned trees along specific streets and in certain parks proposed for treatment. The Reporting Form will allow residents to report gypsy moth observations by inputting details including quantities and life stage observed and sharing photos.
“As a City, we have made many critical investments to protect and preserve our tree canopy throughout Mississauga to benefit the entire community,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “Trees play a vital role in our fight against climate change while providing endless benefits like cleaning the air of pollutants, providing habitats for wildlife, helping to make our city beautiful and adding charm to our neighbourhoods. Mississauga has been faced with trying to eradicate invasive species and limit their damage to our tree canopy and we have been successful with our mitigation management of the Asian Longhorned Beetle.”
The City will focus its efforts on areas that have higher populations of gypsy moth egg masses. Three strategies will be implemented including egg mass scrapings, injecting trees with a botanical insecticide and ground sprays.
Tree injections are anticipated to be conducted in Applewood Hills Park, Paul Coffey Park, Huron Park and Sugar Maple Woods. Ground spraying is anticipated to be conducted in Cedarbrook Park and Jaycee Park.
Over the next few weeks, City staff and contractors will be applying pest management strategies in certain areas around the city. Residents are reminded to maintain a physical distance of at least 2 metres (or 6 feet) from staff.
For more information about gypsy moths in Mississauga, visit missisauga.ca/gypsymoth.