Forest pest management in Newfoundland and Labrador

The Department of Fisheries and Land Resources, Forest Insect & Disease Control Section has the primary responsibility for forest pest management activities conducted within the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador. An integrated pest management approach is utilized that includes detection and monitoring surveys, the assessment of impacts, and the use of treatments to control major forest pests as necessary. The Province works closely with other federal and provincial partners, including the Healthy Forest Partnership, in managing indigenous and introduced forest pests.

Like other jurisdictions monitoring surveys conducted include the use of pheromone traps (male moths) to monitor low density populations and branch sampling and processing of these branches to determine the number of overwintering life-stages. The latter is used to forecast populations and damage levels expected in the ensuing year for various pests. Processing of branch samples is conducted at the Departments Forest Insect & Disease laboratory. Beyond surveys to monitor and forecast forest pest populations, the Forest Insect & Disease Control Section also conducts an annual aerial defoliation survey to map the extent and severity of damage observed from various forest pests.

Planning for treatments is based on the results of the above surveys and evaluation of expected forest impacts. All proposed treatment areas are vetted using an internal process that includes other Provincial Departments and Special Interest Groups. Communications related to the use of pesticides to protect forest areas from major forest pests is done in accordance to the Terms and Conditions of a Provincial Pesticide Operator License.

Treatments for the most recent season (2020)

In 2020, a total of 44,000 hectares of forest will be treated with Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). For the most up-to-date information, go to the map section of the Healthy Forest Partnership website.