Professor Hamelin studies tree diseases to better understand forest disease outbreaks.
Richard Hamelin believes that the difficult weather conditions of recent years may have weakened trees affected by the hemlock looper.
We had droughts, which didn’t help, he believes. He explains that drought conditions may have prevented trees from drawing the necessary resources from the soil.
Trees, which are normally capable of to defend themselves against the looper, suddenly they had no more water, says Richard Hamelin.
Until recently, the City of Vancouver made the decision not to cut down trees affected by the hemlock looper. It's an insect that is here naturally. In a natural forest, we have epidemics, it's part of the regeneration process, explains Richard Hamelin.
Marie-Claire Howard believes, however, that the City could have acted differently. I think the decision not to deal with these loopers was not the best. It was taken because if we treat this type of looper, we kill other insects, she explains.
Today Today, the Parks Commission explains that cutting down trees has become essential for forest health and reducing fire risks.
Is the hemlock looper threatening our forests?.BROADCAST HERE FIRST.Panorama.
Is the hemlock looper threatening our forests?
BROADCAST HERE FIRST Panorama
Listen to the audio (Is the hemlock looper threatening our forests?. 12 minutes 11 seconds)< source srcset="https://images.radio-canada.ca/q_auto,w_160/v1/audio/emission/1x1/panorama-emission-premiere-gregory-bernard.jpg" media="(min-width: 0) ">
Stanley Park is home to 400 hectares of natural rainforest made up of a wide variety of trees such as western red cedar, big leaf maple and Douglas fir, in addition to hemlock
Currently, the City of Vancouver is exploring options to manage hemlock loopers over the longer term.
The idea is to replant with species that will resist loopers, but also bad weather, frost, cold, heat and more, says Marie-Claire Howard.
The City says the long-term goal is to reset the ecology of Stanley Park and create a more diverse and resilient forest environment .
With information from Wildinette Paul and Dominique Lévesque
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