July 03 2014

Emerald ash borer Rosemère remains on the alert

Over the decades, the Town of Rosemère has built quite a reputation for environmental protection and the preservation of the country charm so dear to its residents. For this reason, for a number of years now, it has adopted a proactive stance in dealing with the imminent arrival of the emerald ash borer, a devastating insect from East Asia, which is presently wreaking havoc in the Greater Montreal area. 

It should be specified, at the outset, that the last time the Town planted an ash tree on public land was in 2006. In fact, it ceased this practice as soon as it became aware of the risk of the borer’s proliferation. Fortunately, Rosemère has long favoured the diversification of its urban forest. Documents available to residents on its website attest to this. As a result, it expects to weather the crisis without undue damage to its treed landscape. 

Today, while no sign of the emerald ash borer’s presence has yet been detected in Rosemère, the Town remains on the alert and keeps abreast of what it being done in the Thérèse-De Blainville RCM as well as in the Montréal Urban Community - (CMM  Communauté urbaine de Montréal). "Since the emerald ash borer is now present in Boisbriand and Terrebonne, we must actively prepare for its appearance on our territory,” states Mayor Madeleine Leduc, who went on to explain that the Public Works Department’s parks and green spaces division is closely monitoring the situation. 

Further to this, detection traps were installed in 2012 and their numbers have grown with every passing year, though periodic inspections have not yet revealed the presence of this insect. The Town is also debarking ash trees on both pubic and private land the moment the possibility of infestation arises. The Town employs a full-time eco-consultant who responds to citizens’ requests, conducting the inspection of trees suspected of harbouring the insect, and dispensing practical tips on appropriate treatments and, if need be, the selection of a replacement species.

As a further preventive measure, in 2014, Rosemère also undertook an inventory of all public trees on its territory. Carried out over a three-year period, this measure will eventually make it possible, among other things, to accurately determine the proportion of ash trees, which is currently estimated to be approximately 20%. Concurrently, the Town is conducting a pilot project involving the use of TreeAzin, a preventive organic tree treatment, on majestic public ash trees along Grande-Côte Road and Charbonneau Park. These trees were treated last June by a specialized firm. 

In an effort to keep its citizens abreast of signs of infestation, control methods, approaches to take when in doubt, and the importance of ensuring the diversification of the urban forest, two free conferences have been held since the fall of 2013, with a third one scheduled for this September. At that time, the Town will be in a position to report on the results from traps checked during the summer months. 

These information evenings are an essential complement to documents, which have been available for more than three years on the municipal website, at www.ville.rosemere.qc.ca, in the "Technical Services, Public Works and Environment” section as well as articles published regularly in the municipal news bulletin. It should be noted that literature on this subject is also available on the government of Canada’s website at www.inspection.qc.ca/phytoravageurs. 

In spite of these many efforts, and while the emerald ash borer has not yet been detected in Rosemère, no one can state, with any certainty, that this devastating insect is not here. Consequently, the Town is pursuing its actions and will soon be drafting a policy specifying interventions required when a tree has been attacked and conditions for their application. "Until then, detection work continues, as do our efforts to raise public awareness,” explained mayor Leduc, who went on to add: "The emerald ash borer remains a priority issue for our administration, and the public can rest assured that we are monitoring the situation very closely.” 

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Town of Rosemère

For information:
Michel Girouard
Director of Communications
Tel.: 450 621-3500, ext. 1243

Email: mgirouard@ville.rosemere.qc.ca

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