The Oregon Department of Agriculture has scheduled a public information meeting to discuss its proposed gypsy moth eradication project for this spring in Shady Cove. ODA representatives and health officials will be on hand to answer questions and concerns from the public.
The meeting is scheduled for Thursday Feb. 21, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Upper Rogue Community Center, 22465 Highway 62 in Shady Cove.
ODA is proposing a 336-acre eradication area roughly centered just west of Highway 62 on the southeast side of the Rogue River. Last summer, six gypsy moths were detected in a single trap located in the area. Two gypsy moths were detected in the area in both 2005 and 2006. The evidence indicates a breeding population of gypsy moth is present in the area.
ODA is proposing three aerial applications of the biological insecticide Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki (B.t.k.), which has been used routinely in other gypsy moth eradication projects throughout the West, including Oregon, since 1984.
A final decision on the eradication proposal will be made by the director of ODA. If approved, the spray project would be scheduled to take place in late April and early-to-mid May.
A draft project Environmental Assessment has been prepared to assess possible environmental impacts of the proposed eradication program. Copies of the draft are available on the ODA Web site at <http://oregon.gov/ODA/PLANT/IPPM/gm_ea08.shtml> and from the Oregon Department of Agriculture, Plant Division Office in Salem. Interested persons may also phone 1-800-525-0137 to request a copy. The comment period on the draft Environmental Assessment will end at the close of business March 3, 2008.
Early detection and eradication of gypsy moth infestations are goals of ODA to prevent economic and environmental losses to Oregon by restrictive quarantines on commodities, by loss of foliage and even trees,or loss of favorable fish habitat due to expanding gypsy moth populations.
For more information, contact Barry Bai at (503) 986-4645 or Bruce Pokarney at (503) 986-4559.