Montreal West launches vaccination program to fight Emerald Ash Borer
Town will partially reimburse cost for new treatment
The Town of Montreal West has unanimously passed a resolution it hopes will help protect trees against the Emerald Ash Borer.
It will reimburse residents half the cost of vaccinating their ash trees, up to a maximum of $250.
Trees have to be less than 30 per cent infested and they must be injected before the end of the growing season.
Town councillor Elizabeth Ulin says it's a good investment.
"These ash trees are some of the hardest working residents we have here. They clean our air, they increase our property value, they help soak up storm water. We can't afford to lose them," said Ulin.
McGill forest ecologist Jim Fyles says there is no guarantee the program will work, since the treatment was only developed a few years ago; however, he says it could be worth a shot.
"It's sort of like venture capital... and it may be that you will lose your money and the tree will eventually die. But at the same time, you might protect the tree and keep it for longer," said Fyles.
The vaccination reduces the beetle's ability to reproduce, and has to be repeated every two years.
It's a natural insecticide and is not expected to have harmful effects on the environment.