The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources has decided to seek public reaction to its proposal for a spring insecticide- spraying program in the Espanola area.
H. McGauley, head of the natural pest control division of the Ministry of Natural Resources, said the Ministry will hold a public information sessions in Espanola in the last week of January to discuss possible insecticide spraying options against a massive infestation of jackpine budworm on 800,000 acres of Crown land 35 kilometres northwest of Espanola.
He said three or four options have been prepared by the Ministry, which vary both the percentage of chemical to biological insecticide and the amount of spraying as opposed to accelerated cutting.
Residents will be shown maps of the proposed spraying sites to decide whether the options are acceptable to them, he said.
The Ministry says it will consider public comments when preparing its recommendation early in the spring.
Because of the public concern about the possible health effects of chemical insecticides, the federal Department of Agriculture recently granted a temporary registration for a biological insecticide called bacillus thuringiensis for the proposed spring spraying program.