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Officials on Alert For Asian Longhorned Beetle

Oct 03, 2003

MISSISSAUGA, October 8, 2003 - Mississauga City Council unanimously approved a by-law today that will help to minimize the impact of the Asian Longhorned Beetle should it be identified in Mississauga.

The by-law authorizes Forestry staff to inspect trees for the presence of Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALHB) on public or private property in accordance with the Municipal Act.

"The Asian Longhorned Beetle poses a significant threat to healthy, broadleaf hardwood trees," said Tony Fleishmann, manager, Urban Forestry. "Early detection is essential to controlling, eradicating and limiting the spread of the insect to other areas. We are asking businesses, homeowners and other property owners in this area to be on the alert and to report any sightings to us immediately."

While there are no reported cases of ALHB in Mississauga, the City's Urban Forestry staff is on alert for sightings of the beetle which The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) positively identified in Woodbridge, Ontario, the City of Vaughan and the City of Toronto in September.

While the insect does not threaten human health according to the CFIA, the first confirmed discovery of the ALHB in Canada poses a significant risk to broadleaf, hardwood trees and forests. Trees infested with ALHB larvae eventually become riddled with holes causing them to die. With no natural predators or legally approved pesticides that could prevent their spread, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has implemented an aggressive campaign in the affected areas through tree removal to control and eradicate the pest with full co-operation from municipalities and federal and provincial partners.

For more information on the ALHB and/or the City's ALHB backgrounder, please call Tony Fleishmann, manager, Urban Forestry at 905-615-4584.

To view pictures of the beetle, visit the CFIA website at Potential sightings should be reported to the Urban Forestry Section at 905-896-5384 or the CFIA toll-free hotline at 1-800-442-2342. -30 -