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Wednesday, April 6, 2011 Capital News

NEWS W CENTRAL OKANAGAN

Combating pine beetle infestation

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age where there has never been any in the past— even in areas where they thought the trees might be safe because of elevation or buffer zones around. “It’s lucky we have a multi-species forest. Much of what is visible on the hills around the valley is predominantly Douglas fir, so it won’t be as impacted,” he commented. Stacey Harding, parks supervisor for the District of West Kelowna, says they’ve already completed 19 projects this year in parks and district-owned land, removing beetle infested pines. Infestation on the Westside has been spotty and random, rather than moving in like a wave, as had been expected, noted Harding. Removal of beetle-infested wood is just one component of the district’s wildfire fuel reduction program, for which they still have some funds from a Union of B.C. Municipalities grant, but no private land can be included, he said. The district’s west

and northern boundaries are where the most pressure from the infestation is coming from, so work is being done in the Rose Valley area, Mount Boucherie and the boundaries of Glen Canyon, said Harding. Surrounding municipalities should be glad the district has been proactive about acquiring grant money to do this work, because the beetle doesn’t recognize political boundaries, he noted. He also commended the public for staying clear and being respectful of workers in parks and on public land. The regional district is doing work in Glen Canyon Regional Park adjacent to downtown West Kelowna, and is working on plans for Rose Valley and Upper Glen Canyon Regional Parks, with the help of a fuel management grant from the UBCM. Work has already been done in Mission Creek and Glen Canyon Regional Parks, according to Bruce Smith, spokesman for the Central Okanagan Regional District. Mountain pine beetle

SEAN CONNOR/CAPITAL NEWS

A FORESTRY work crew uses a chipper to clean up cut wood as part of a fuel modification and pine beetle project in West Kelowna. attacks all species of pine trees, but western pine beetle only attacks ponderosa pine. Following a ‘flight’ in early summer, the beetles attack pines nearby, depending on wind conditions, burrowing under the bark and interrupting the flow of sap up the tree. By emitting an aggregation pheromone, they will work together to mass attack a tree and overcome its natural defence of ‘pitching out’ the invaders with a gob of pitch, visible on the outside bark of the tree. That pitch tube is an indicator of trees which have been invaded by the beetle, even if the trees haven’t yet turned red and died. A blue stain fungus carried by the bee-

tle is partly to blame for the tree’s death, which occurs within a year of infestation. One way to combat an infestation is use of a verbenone pouch containing an anti-aggregation pheromone, that tells flying beetles this tree is already full and there’s no room for more. Forestry consultant Don Fowler says the best time to nail a pouch to your tree is prior to the first flight of the year, likely in early July. He emphasizes the most important thing property owners can do is identify trees that have been attacked and remove them before summer, and properly dispose of them to prevent the spread of beetles. There is a cost to de-

posit tree trunks more than 20 centimetres in diameter, and loads of tree debris of more than 250 kilograms in weight at the Glenmore Landfill. But it’s not always possible to burn infested trees, and by disposing of them on the property or elsewhere, the beetles will fly and infest new trees. All property owners are urged to remove and properly dispose of infested trees to help prevent spread of the beetle. Once dead, those also present a safety hazard, noted Stewart. For more beetle information, go to the city’s website: www.kelowna. ca. To learn more about Firesmart guidelines, see www.pep.bc.ca/hazard_ preparedness/FireSmart.

NO GMO judiesteeves@kelownacapnews.com

to

(NO to Genetically Modified Organisms)

Bill C474’s defeat affected food consumers and farmers alike, both organic and conventional.To protect the natural food supply from genetic contamination, we say no to genetically modified organisms.

Accompanying us at the rally as our special guest, Percy Schmeiser, the legendary Canadian farmer who fought the corporate giant

Monsanto.

COLLEGE LECTURE

Enough is enough. We all have a right to eat pork without mice genes and the right to eat food crops that aren’t producing pesticides internally (you can’t wash that off). Let’s stop GM Salmon, the Enviropig and block GM Alfalfa.We have a right to know which foods are GMO. Come sign the petition for mandatory labeling.

telephone (250) 878-9437

ALSO

Beetle from A1

Percy Schmeiser will be speaking in the theatre at the Okanagan College Campus on KLO Road.

Saturday, April 9th 2011 Doors open @ 6:30 p.m. 1000 KLO Rd.Kelowna, B.C.

ENTRY DONATIONS APPRECIATED

truefoodfoundation@shaw.ca

Kelowna Capital News April 6, 2011  
Kelowna Capital News April 6, 2011  

The Kelowna Capital News from April 6, 2011. Find more news online at kelownacapnews.com

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