Thunder Bay

Christmas trees inspected for Gypsy moths, pine tree beetles: CFIA

While the transportation of firewood is prohibited between districts in Ontario, Christmas trees from the south will soon be taking up residency in parking lots, homes and eventually backyards and fireplaces all across northwestern Ontario.
(iStock)

While the transportation of firewood is prohibited between districts in Ontario, Christmas trees from the south will soon be taking up residency in parking lots, homes and eventually backyards and fireplaces all across northwestern Ontario.

But, unlike firewood, most Christmas trees are inspected for invasive pests before leaving the woodlot, according to the Canadian Food Inpsection Agency.
Marcel Dawson of the Canadian Food Inpsection Agency says most Christmas trees are inspected for invasive pests before leaving the woodlot. (CFIA)

Marcel Dawson, who manages forestry and plant protection programs with the agency, told CBC News two of the biggest threats are the gypsy moth, and the pine tree beetle.

He called the gypsy moth "a cosmopolitan insect" that could be on any Christmas tree species.

"Gypsy moth is present only in Ontario, and provinces east of Ontario," Dawson noted.

"These pests are costly. I mean, if we can slow their spread down through the movement of these trees to other parts of the country, it means producers in British Columbia of Christmas trees don't have to deal with gypsy moth."

Dawson said there is little risk from the emerald ash borer, as they are exclusive to ash trees.

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