As we finally start to say goodbye to winter and say hello to spring, it's also time to start welcoming all of the bugs that come with the warmer weather. This year, Toronto's Gypsy Moth infestation has led the city to take preventive measures. For the past few years, the City of Toronto has been attempting to control the increase of this moth population, yet some of their methods just aren't working anymore, so it's time for something new.
European Gypsy Moths are an invasive insect that when in caterpillar form will feed off the leaves of oak trees. Yet, these moths get so invasive that they often tend to cause severe leaf loss in trees which greatly weakens them and can lead to a huge loss in both public and private trees.
In the past, the City of Toronto has attempted to stop this infestation by injecting trees and scraping eggs away. However, the city warns that there are a number of 'high-risk' areas where these preventative measures are no longer working.
The City warns that Ward 1, 2, 3, 4, 11, 12, and 15 are at the greatest risk for a Gypsy Moth infestation this upcoming spring and summer.
In case you unaware of Ward numbers, this means that Etobicoke North, Etobicoke Centre, Etobicoke Lakeshore, Parkdale-High Park, University-Rosedale, Toronto-St. Paul, and Don Valley West are all at 'high-risk' of seeing this pesky infestation this upcoming season.
However, in an attempts to limit the amount of Gypsy Moths, the City of Toronto is launching an aerial spray program this spring in each of these wards.
This four-day aerial spray will take place sometime between May 15 and June 16 between the hours of 5:30 and 7:30 AM. The exact date of when this will be happening will depend on the weather and the size of the leaves on the trees within the areas.
During this spray, you may be able to spot two helicopters that will be spraying the area with a pesticide. The City states that it has been approved by Health Canada and only poses a minimal risk to human health.
The City of Toronto also ensures that this spray will not harm other insects, fish, birds or mammals.
The city will be holding a few different public meetings up to the spray date if you have any questions.