Federal and state agriculture officials on Sept. 21 removed the Mexican fruit fly (Mexfly) quarantine in Hargill, Willacy County, Texas, after three generations elapsed with no additional detections in this area. The action was taken by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA).
This action releases the final 91.12 square miles of the Hargill quarantine, which contained 2,616.3 acres of commercial citrus.
On May 27, 2022, APHIS and TDA established a Mexfly quarantine in Hargill, Willacy County, Texas, following the confirmed detection of a mature mated female Mexfly from a trap in a sweet orange tree in a residential area and two larvae in a nearby commercial citrus grove. Since its inception, APHIS has worked cooperatively with TDA to eradicate these transient pest populations through various control actions per program protocols.
An APHIS website contains a description of all the current federal fruit fly quarantine areas. Included are quarantine areas for Mexfly in California and Texas, and Oriental fruit fly in California.
Additional information on the Mexfly quarantine area may be obtained from Fruit Fly National Policy Manager Richard Johnson at 301-851-2109.
Mexfly is a serious pest of fruit crops. It is especially damaging to citrus, mango and peaches, and has a strong affinity for grapefruit. Mexflies are abundant breeders. A single female may lay up to 1,500 eggs in her lifetime. In addition to Texas, Mexflies have been found in Arizona, Southern California and Florida.
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
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