OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(June 30, 2010) - The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed the presence of the emerald ash borer (EAB) in Brantford, Ontario. The infested trees are located in the Wood Street and North Park Street area. The EAB does not pose any risk to human health.

The CFIA is continuing to survey trees in the area and affected property owners will be notified. Regulatory measures to control this pest will be taken based on information obtained through the surveys.

The EAB is a destructive beetle that has already killed a large number of ash trees in Ontario and north eastern U.S., and poses a major economic threat to urban and forested areas of North America. Although there have been numerous finds of this pest in Ontario and one location in Quebec, the CFIA continues to work with its partners and stakeholders towards the goal of slowing its spread.

The emerald ash borer does not spread quickly on its own. The key challenge in limiting the spread of this beetle is to get people to stop moving potentially infested ash materials - such as logs, branches, nursery stock, wood chips and firewood of all species - to non-infested locations. Area residents can play a key part in helping to control the spread of EAB by avoiding actions that would promote its spread.

We all have a responsibility to protect Canada's forests.

Additional information is available on the CFIA web site at www.inspection.gc.ca/pests or by calling 1-866-463-6017.

Background

The emerald ash borer was first discovered in Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan in 2002. It is believed that it was introduced to North America from eastern Asia in wooden packaging materials in the early 1990's, but went undetected until its population built up to damaging levels.

Since then, infestations have been detected and regulated areas have been created to control this pest in the City of Toronto, the City of Hamilton, and the regions of Halton, Peel, York and Durham; Essex County and the Municipality of Chatham-Kent; Lambton County; Elgin County; Middlesex County; Norfolk County; Huron County, Sault Ste. Marie; Ottawa and its neighbouring city of Gatineau, Quebec; and the city of Carignan, Quebec including the cities of Chambly, Richelieu, Saint-Basile-le-Grand and the municipality of Saint-Mathias-sur-Richelieu.

Regulatory measures prohibit the movement of ash tree materials and firewood of any species without prior permission from the CFIA. The aim is to control the movement of potentially infested materials in order to slow the spread of EAB to new areas. Those who move regulated materials from regulated areas without the permission of the CFIA could face fines and/or prosecution.

Source: CFIA

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