Advanced Search | Help
Hon Jim Sutton
Minister for Biosecurity
Hon Marian Hobbs
Acting Minister for Biosecurity
The final aerial treatment operation for painted apple moth marked a major milestone in the
battle to wipe out the pest, Biosecurity Minister Jim Sutton and Acting
Biosecurity Minister Marian Hobbs said today.
Mr Sutton said that in July
2002, the Government made the tough decision to support a major aerial spraying
operation to ensure the eradication of the painted apple moth by the Agriculture
and Forestry Ministry.
"This moth is a serious threat
to our urban, native and commercial trees with an estimated economic impact of
about $258 million.
"MAF was aware the medical
conditions of some people could be exacerbated by some of the components in
Foray 48B so they set up an independent health support service to mitigate any
impacts for a small section of the population in the painted apple moth zone.
Aerial spraying has disrupted people's lives, but we have been heartened by the
support we have received from the majority of the people in western Auckland.
"Underpinning the aerial
treatments has been scientific studies to provide us with valuable information
on how fight similar pests in the future."
Ms Hobbs said today was the
last time western Auckland would be aerially treated for painted apple moth
unless a small population was detected.
"But with no wildling moths
being trapped for four months, MAF is optimistic that the battle to eradicate
this pest has largely been won."
However, she emphasised that
the end of aerial operations did not mean the end of the eradication programme.
Monitoring for any sign of remnant moth populations will continue and vegetation
controls will stay in place.
Both ministers congratulated MAF on their efforts and thanked the people of western
Auckland again for supporting the eradication effort to wipe out the Painted
CATHIE BELL on 04 4719855 or 027 4998467