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Asian long-horned beetle successfully eradicated from Canada

The Asian long-horned beetle has not been spotted in Canada since 2007 (courtesy: Kyle T. Ramirez)
The Asian long-horned beetle has not been spotted in Canada since 2007 (courtesy: Kyle T. Ramirez)

Cheryl Santa Maria, staff writer

April 8, 2013 — The Asian long-horned beetle has been eradicated from Canada, the government has announced.

The Asian long-horned beetle is no longer a threat in Canada, according to the government.

"Today marks an important milestone in our fight against invasive pests," said Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture†Pierre Lemieux at a press†briefing†on Friday.

"Thanks to the hard work and dedication of many organizations and individuals, Iím pleased to announce that the Asian long-horned beetle has been successfully eradicated from Canada."

The wood-boring species was first detected in Toronto and Vaughan in 2003. The insect attacks healthy hardwood trees, like maple, elm, poplar and willow.

There are no natural controls to combat the beetle. According to a press release issued by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, the only way to eliminate the species was to remove all susceptible trees within a defined area.

That prompted a Ministerial order which resulted in the removal of 30,000 trees in parts of Vaughan and Toronto.

It appears the efforts have paid off: According to the government, it has not been spotted in Canada since 2007.

"Our government has been strongly committed to the eradication of invasive species like the Asian Long-horned beetle. We are pleased to see that our efforts have paid off," Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver was quoted as saying.

"Our world-class science and research will continue to support affected regions across Canada for the purposes of eliminating invasive species and protecting Canada's forests."

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