To spray or not to spray? By Tamara Hayler. Ever since the painted apple moth arrived in New Zealand, it has started to take over our native forestry. MAF had an idea to spray over thousands of hectares to kill the apple moth caterpillars, but there must be a better solution!
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Ever since the painted apple moth arrived in New Zealand, it has started to take over our native forestry.
MAF had an idea to spray over thousands of hectares to kill the apple moth caterpillars, but there must be a better solution!
Some people have been getting unhealthy reactions from the spray, so, does anyone care??
The painted apple moth is called PAM for short. It is damaging our native plants by living their lifestyle. It has been harassing the community and is causing a lot of arguments over the years. MAF has arranged an idea for getting rid of the moth, and that is aerial spraying. Aerial spraying is spraying over a large area, it is also spreading over houses, which is making people sick. The moth is still here so therefor the spray doesn’t work, and it doesn’t meet my standards! The moth produces up to 700 eggs! They are also an Australian native. It was first found in New Zealand in the suburb of Gleneden in west Auckland in May 1999. newly hatched can produce silky threads that enable them to “ride the wind” and travel up to 200 metres! The male moths can fly but the females are flightless, so the female is more likely to get caught than the male. It’s thought that the moth might have come to New Zealand on or in a shipping container.
I’m personally strongly against spraying!
There are other alternatives than to spray. Like, finding what attracts them, capturing them when we see one, and also even the possibility to leave them. If you want to spray, don’t people come first other than plants!!! Thousands of money is going out the door without the spray hardly even working!! You’re wasting money!! So MAF and the political ministry need to come together and form a better and more affordable plan. Hannah, a 12 year old, had this to say….. “they made a great decision to act against the moth, but aerial spraying wasn’t the best choice, after all that’s happened with people getting sick.”
Eleven year old Jacob also had this to say: “I don’t like the spray. MAF won’t tell us what was in it. I also don’t think it’s working because they’re still finding caterpillars alive in the spray zone. They say the spray is harmless, but I don’t agree with that because MAF evacuates more than 100 people every time they spray.”
Plus a member of a community action group had this to say: “people are experiencing asthma, headaches, respiratory problems, diarrhoea, nausea and bleeding noses because of this spray! No long-term health studies on the effects of this spray have ever been done!”
So with all this, why spray?
There is a possibility that even the spray is damaging our plants too, if it’s not applied correctly.
So it’s the caterpillars and the spray doing the damage. Why can’t we capture a female, do some tests on it, and find out what attracts them, as the females can’t fly, we should have an advantage.
We should think before we spray!
As you have read this,
have you decided to spray or not to spray,
because if you haven’t I’ll recap:
The spray isn’t harming the caterpillars much,
it’s getting to the plants and people,
Making them become unhealthy,
Is it people over plants. People or plants?