I subscribe to many different websites, magazines and blogs, from around the world on an array of gardening topics. In my e-mailbox today was an article from Growing Produce Magazine about a European Grapevine Moth that has been discovered in California. Unless this thing bought a ticket on a Delta Airlines flight, it was brought over here accidentally. I have ranted before on accidentally bringing invasive pests into a state or country. There are laws in place to hopefully stop this from happening, unfortunately, most of the time they are ignored.
Now, I am not by any means a Wine drinker, but I do love grapes. I have two varieties growing right now, with plans to add a few more. The last thing I want to see is an article like this cropping up.
(Courtesy of Growing Produce.com)
Feared Pest Found In Rich Fruit-Growing Area
The USDA’s Systematic Entomology Laboratory has confirmed the capture of two European grapevine moths (EGVM), Lobesia botrana, trapped on April 28, in two separate traps about ½ mile apart and placed in vineyards southeast of the city of Fresno. The discoveries come just months after the first find of the pest in the U.S. It was initially found in Napa County in late 2009.
These traps were part of a statewide program to detect the invasive moth, according to the Fresno County Department of Agriculture. As a result of the finds, additional traps were placed in an approximately 80 square-mile area around the discoveries by Fresno County and California Department of Food and Agriculture staff. An additional EGVM was found May 1, in the Kingsburg area, approximately 11 miles from the original find site.
County, state, and federal officials are developing an agriculture quarantine to prevent the human-aided movement of the moth. Treatment options for the EGVM include traditional and organic ovicides and larvicides as well as mating disruption. These activities are designed to give both domestic and foreign trading partners confidence that products moving in commerce are free of EGVM.
The Fresno County Department of Agriculture and the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) currently have over 5,000 EGVM traps in place throughout the county. Fresno County will continue to monitor traps in the county and in the quarantine area to determine the area where the pest is present.
Since the original September find in Napa County, EGVM has been found in Sonoma, Solano and Mendocino counties, where eradication efforts are on-going. While the Napa/Sonoma region is commonly known nationally as “Wine Country,” by far the bulk of the state’s wine grapes, and nearly all the table grapes, are grown in the San Joaquin Valley.
EGVM is a grape pest of economic importance in Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, southern Russia, Japan and recently Chile. The larva feed on grape flowers and developing fruit. Second and third generations cause the most damage by direct feeding on mature grape berries and indirectly by predisposing the crop to grey mold, a fungal infection caused by Botrytis cinerea. Damage is greatest in grape cultivars with compact clusters or sensitive to rot.
I am glad the authorities are on this. Who knows how much economic damage these moths could have caused if they were not discovered. Just to be fair, these could have been introduced to the states from a commercial shipment of something else that would not normally be examined for the moths. I have heard of Asian Citrus Psyllids being discovered in a shipment of Basil, so anything is possible. There is not much I can do about commercial shipments, However, I will plead my case again to the general public, please do not bring anything into this country from another country! The risk is just to great. If there is a plant that you feel you just can not live without, check online for it. There is a good chance that somebody in the states may sell it. They have been authorized to propagate it and there should not be any "Foreign" pests on it then. If you can't find something you are looking for, PLEASE contact me, I have many contacts out there and there is a good chance I know where you can get some.....LEGALLY!