USA and Canada: Asian Gypsy Moth *Update*

28/08/2014 | North

The United States and Canada have issued a bulletin advising of reports of high population levels of Asian Gypsy Moth (AGM) in some countries regulated for AGM.

AGM has recently been detected, in some instances in high numbers, on vessels arriving in North America. These detections have led to delayed entry into ports in the United States and Canada and could result in refusal of entry.

The purpose of the bulletin is to remind vessel operators of the precautions that can be taken to avoid any potential delays.  A copy of the bulletin can be read here.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

During the course of 2012 a large number of vessels intercepted by U.S. and Canadian authorities were found to contain both Asian Gypsy Moth (AGM) egg masses and live AGM adults.

As a result of these interceptions the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) have reissued their joint AGM alert, a copy of which can be read here.

Members are reminded that vessels must arrive at North American ports with the required pre-departure certification and free of AGM. In order to ensure that the vessel is confirmed free of AGM and that there is not sufficient time for the vessel to be re-infested; inspections should be conducted as close as possible to the time of departure from a regulated area.

In order to avoid potential delays it is also recommended that further inspections and disposal of any egg masses or other AGM life stages be conducted by the ship's crew prior to arrival at a North American port.

Our LP Briefing on Asian Gypsy Moth may be read here.

17 August 2012 

The Club has become aware of a number of recent cases where the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) have conducted inspections on vessels and have found live Asian Gypsy Moth (AGM) egg masses on the vessel's structure or cargo.

As a result of the increase in inspections where live egg masses have been found, the USDA and CFIA have issued a joint alert, a copy of which can be read here.

Vessels which have been found to contain AGM egg masses will be prohibited from entering US or Canadian ports until suitable cleaning has been completed and the vessel is free from infestation.

The USDA and CFIA require all vessels which have called at ports in the regulated areas during the high risk period to be certified free from AGM, by a recognised body, prior to departure from the regulated port. A copy of this phytosanitary certificate should be forwarded to the vessel's US or Canadian agents.

In order to ensure that AGM egg masses are not introduced to the vessel following certification, the inspection should be conducted as close to the vessels departure as practicable.

All vessels should conduct a thorough self inspection, in accordance with the guidelines contained in the Gypsy Moth Inspectional Pocket Guide, five days prior to arriving at a US or Canadian port and confirm to their agents that the vessel is free from infestation.

31 May 2012 

Although Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection service (APHIS)  have designated the same East Asian areas as "high-risk", CFIA now requires all marine vessels that enter a Canadian port, during the period 1 March to 15 October, that have visited ports in the regulated area during the periods listed in the current year or in the year immediately preceding the current year to provide the vessels Canadian agent with:

  • A summary of the ports called upon by the vessel for the past two years; and

  • A copy of a Phytosanitary Certificate or other approved certificate(s) (a list of certificates approved by the CFIA can be found here).

Vessels that enter a Canadian port during the period of 16 October to 28 (or 29) February, which have visited ports in regulated areas, will be permitted to enter without interruption. These vessels are subject to inspection at any time during their stay in Canada.

A Phytosanitary Certificate or other approved certificate(s) is not required for entry into Canada during this period.

Should an inspection reveal the presence of AGM, the vessel will be considered to be non-compliant

The Canadian agent is responsible for ensuring that a marine vessel which has visited a port in a regulated area notifies a local office of the CFIA at least 96 hours prior to the vessel's arrival in Canadian waters, of the vessel's intent to enter Canada. The vessel may be required to report at a designated inspection site at a time mutually agreed to by the agent and the CFIA.

Vessels seeking entry to Canada without a valid AGM certificate may be held at offshore anchorages and inspected by CFIA officials during the high risk period. Such vessels may also be subject to financial penalties for failing to comply with CFIA regulations.

CFIA continues to encourage vessels seeking entry to Canada to voluntarily conduct an at-sea AGM self inspection well prior to arrival. While vessels that were unable to obtain a pre-departure AGM certificate will still be held offshore for CFIA inspection, the self-inspection will reduce the risk that the vessel is infested with AGM, which would subject the vessel to more severe operational control measures and penalties.

A summary of requirements is provided here.