Psyllid trap catches continue in California citrus

10/03/2013 11:26:00 AM
Vicky Boyd

The state already has enacted a quarantine within a 5-mile radius of the Exeter find, according to a California Department of Food and Agriculture announcement. Similar actions are expected shortly around the Strathmore and Ducor finds.

Crews are currently conducting delimiting surveys in Strathmore and Ducor to determine if the pest has spread.

Barring additional psyllids, Blakley said he expected the state would quarantine an area within a 5-mile radius of the trap catches. The boundaries most likely will overlap existing ones set up when six psyllids were trapped last summer in Porterville and will create one large quarantine extending from Lindsay to Ducor.

Growers within the quarantine must remove all leaves and stems from citrus shipments before they leave the area.

Because it’s labor-intensive, most growers in the Porterville quarantine area last season opted to spray groves with an approved insecticide and harvest within seven days of treatment, Blakely said.

Either way, the goal is to reduce the chances of psyllids hitchhiking on loads of citrus.

The quarantines also prohibit shipment of citrus plants outside the areas unless they’re grown in a U.S. Department of Agriculture-approved structure. Homeowners also cannot move plants or fruit outside the boundaries.

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