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BC government issues warning of tree-killing moth outbreak

The Ministry of Forests is warning of the recent spread of a moth species known to quickly kill healthy Douglas fir trees.

According to a statement released Tuesday, an infestation of Tussock Moth has been found in trees located in the western Cariboo region near the community of Alkali Lake.

<who> Photo Credit: Ministry of Forests.

Generally found in the Okanagan and south Thompson regions, the recent infestation marks the farthest north the pest has ever been recorded.

The insect is considered a pest due to its ability to kill large Douglas fir trees in just one to two short years.

<who> Photo Credit: Ministry of Forests.

Furthermore, the moth caterpillars have also been known to cause allergic reactions in about 20% of people.

The Ministry is advising people to not take firewood from the infested area surrounding Alkali Lake.

Officials are currently assessing the infested area and are outlining a treatment plan for when the insects re-emerge in the spring.

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