News Release Archive

A trial project to determine whether the biological insecticide
B.t.k. is effective against the whitemarked tussock moth is being
conducted this week on a small block of Crown woodland in
Colchester County.

Natural Resources Minister Ken MacAskill said the trial is
necessary because the rapidly increasing population of tussock
moth, which defoliates both hardwood and softwood species, is a
very real threat to Nova Scotia woodlands.

"There is already heavy damage on approximately 15 thousand
hectares (38 thousand acres) in Colchester County," said Mr.
MacAskill. "If B.t.k. proves effective against tussock moth, it
can be used next year to combat this destructive insect and
prevent damage to thousands of acres of woodland."

The B.t.k. (Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki) will be sprayed by
helicopter on a 50 hectare (125 acre) site in the Riversdale area
of Colchester County. Two applications are required.

B.t.k. is commonly used in forestry. It occurs naturally in the
soil and does not pose a health risk to humans. Under the trade
name "Foray 48B", B.t.k. was used in 1996 and again this year in
Cape Breton where it has been highly effective in combatting
hemlock looper. 

The Colchester site will be closely monitored to determine
whether Foray 48B is effective against tussock moth.


Contact:   Blain Henshaw
           Natural Resources 

ngr                  August 7, 1997 - 10:30 am