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Winnipeg to Begin Spraying for Cankerworms, Elm Spanworms

May 23, 2019 5:16 PM | News

Ken Nawolsky

Ken Nawolsky, superintendent of insect control (CHRISD.CA FILE)

The City of Winnipeg will begin spraying for spring and fall cankerworm and elm spanworm species this weekend.

The efforts are part of the city’s tree pest caterpillar control program, which begins at 9:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 26, weather permitting.

Initial targeting will focus on the Central St. Boniface, Dufresne, North St. Boniface, Tissot, Norwood East, and Norwood West areas.

“Current surveillance information indicates that the tree pest caterpillar larvae are feeding on the leaves causing many small holes known as ‘shot hole’ damage,” said Ken Nawolsky, superintendent of insect control.

“Winnipeggers can expect to see moderate defoliation in some parts of the city this May and June based on surveillance information.”

Spraying is scheduled to occur Sunday to Thursday evenings, but won’t take place if there is significant rainfall or winds are greater than 20 km/hr.

Pest control will be carried out using BTK (Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies kurstaki) — a biological, organic product. Once BTK is ingested, the pests stop feeding and die 2-3 days later.

Residents can request a buffer zone for their property by contacting 311.