APHIS Establishes a Host List for European Cherry Fruit Fly (Rhagoletis cerasi) and Conditions for Interstate Movement of Regulated Articles in Quarantined Areas

Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has developed a host list for European cherry fruit fly (ECFF, Rhagoletis cerasi), and established conditions for the interstate movement of regulated articles from core areas quarantined for ECFF. These conditions include a systems approach to allow the interstate movement of cherry fruit from areas in a half-mile radius of quarantine ECFF detections without methyl bromide fumigation.

This action is required because the current fruit fly host list in the domestic quarantine regulations for fruit flies in 7 CFR 301.32 does not include ECFF hosts. The list is needed to identify ECFF hosts and to prevent the spread of this pest within the United States. Previous APHIS actions related to ECFF did not specify conditions for interstate movement of ECFF hosts from a quarantined area. This action specifies that, with the exception described below, all host articles must be moved in accordance with the conditions for interstate movement of host articles in 7 CFR 301.32-4 and 301.32-5. Continue reading

APHIS Removes the Mediterranean Fruit Fly (Ceratitis capitata) Quarantine Area in Sun Valley, Los Angeles County, California

Effective June 23, 2018, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) removed the Mediterranean fruit fly (Medfly) quarantine area in the Sun Valley area of Los Angeles County, California.

On August 30, 2017, APHIS and CDFA established a Medfly quarantine in a regulated area of Sun Valley, California. The quarantine restricted the interstate movement of regulated articles from that area to prevent the spread of Medfly to non-infested areas of the United States. This action was necessary after three adult male Medflies were detected between August 17 and August 30, 2017. Additional detections of adults and larvae occurred in residential sites in the area. Since that time, APHIS cooperated with the CDFA and the Los Angeles County Agricultural Commissioner’s office to eradicate the transient Medfly population through various control actions per program protocols.

APHIS removed the quarantine area after three Medfly life-cycles elapsed with negative detections in this area. This removal of the quarantine is reflected on the following designated website, which contains a description of all the current Federal fruit fly quarantine areas: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant-health/ff-quarantine

APHIS Issues Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the National Fruit Fly Cooperative Control Program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is posting a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) for the national fruit fly cooperative control program for public comment. The draft EIS considers potential environmental impacts from each of the alternatives proposed for the national fruit fly cooperative control program should various non-native fruit fly species be detected in the United States or its associated territories.

APHIS’ preferred alternative is to eradicate exotic fruit fly infestations using an integrated pest management approach, which includes chemical and nonchemical control measures. Chemical options may include applying insecticides and/or using detection and control attractants. Nonchemical control methods include sterile insect technique (SIT) and fruit stripping from areas in and around detection sites. Continue reading

USDA responds to China’s new soybean import tariff

In 2016, Chinese officials put in place a new grain import law to keep invasive weeds and other plant pests from entering their country. Last fall, they informed USDA that U.S. grain shipments, particularly soybeans, did not comply with the new law. They specifically cited increased detections of weed seeds.

These weed seeds threaten U.S. access to China’s grain market. If we do nothing, the United States may lose this valuable market. Consider: Approximately 1 of every 3 bushels of U.S. soybean are shipped to China, making it the United States’ largest market for this commodity. In 2017, this export was valued at $12.4 billion, which is approximately 91% by value of all grains shipped to China. Continue reading

Federal and state agencies working together on cattle ticks in Texas

in Southwest Farm Press

The threat of cattle fever ticks spreading northward into the Southwest U.S. is an issue heavy on the minds of South Texas border region livestock producers, who have been operating under inspection, and in some cases quarantine, protocols imposed by federal and state animal health officials.

The protocols were issued as because of an increase in the number of cattle fever ticks discovered on livestock and wildlife outside the permanent tick eradication quarantine zone on the Texas border. Continue reading

APHIS Establishes Mexican Fruit Fly (Anastrepha ludens) Quarantine in the Encinitas Area of San Diego County, California

Effective December 11, 2017, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) established a Mexican Fruit fly (Mexfly) quarantine in the Encinitas area of San Diego County, California. APHIS is applying safeguarding measures and restrictions on the interstate movement or entry into foreign trade of regulated articles from this area.

Between November 29, 2017, and December 11, 2017, CDFA and San Diego County fruit fly program staff trapped and confirmed five adult Mexflies triggering a 65 square mile quarantine area. APHIS is working with CDFA and the San Diego County Agriculture Commissioner’s office to respond to these detections following program survey, treatment, and quarantine protocols. This action is necessary to prevent the spread of Mexfly to non-infested areas of the United States. Continue reading

APHIS Removes the Mexican Fruit Fly (Anastrepha ludens) Quarantine Area in Laredo, Webb County, Texas

Effective January 7, 2018, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) removed the Mexican fruit fly (Mexfly) quarantine area in the area of Laredo, Webb County, Texas.

On June 7, 2016, APHIS and TDA established a Mexfly quarantine in a residential area of Laredo, Texas, restricting the interstate movement of regulated articles from this area to prevent the spread of Mexican fruit fly to non-infested areas of the United States. Since that time, APHIS has worked cooperatively with TDA to eradicate the transient Mexfly population through various control actions per program protocols. APHIS removed the quarantine area after three Mexfly life-cycles elapsed with negative detections in the area. This removal of the quarantine area is reflected on the following designated website, which contains a description of the current Federal fruit fly quarantine areas:

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant_health/plant_pest_info/fruit_flies/quarantine.shtml