Evidence of Oak Processionary Moth (OPM) has been found on an oak tree in Roath Park Gardens in Cardiff as a result of proactive inspection by Natural Resources Wales of seven newly planted oak trees.
A Statutory Plant Health Notice was issued on the trees on 24 July, which requires the treatment and removal of the trees.
The infected tree in Roath Park Gardens were sprayed as a precaution using an insecticide on the evening of the 23 July and will be removed along with the other six trees today, 25 July.
The Welsh Government has said that:
“The first priority is containment and clearance of the pest. We will now work with Natural Resources Wales and Cardiff Council to ensure the trees are replaced.
To prevent the risk of further spread a monitoring programme in the area will be conducted by NRW and Animal and Plant Health Agency colleagues with input from Forest Research and Welsh Government Officials.
On 19 July 2019, we introduced tighter restrictions on the import of oak trees to protect native trees from the threat of OPM. Welsh Government is working closely with Defra, the Forestry Commission and other devolved administrations to ensure UK-wide protection against this pest.”
The improved measures will only permit imports of certain oak trees, including:
those from OPM-free countries
those from designated pest-free areas, including Protected Zones (PZ) – an area of the European Union declared free of OPM