Thursday, September 30, 2010

International Falls CBP agriculture specialists intercept destructive pests

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists recently discovered potentially destructive pests at the International Falls rail facility.

A container arriving from Bangladesh via Canada was targeted by CBP on Sept. 8 for an intensive agriculture examination for potential foreign pests. The shipment, destined for Chicago, was offloaded and the containers swept out.

During the inspection of the pallets, a total of 14 live insects were intercepted and sent to United States Department of Agriculture for identification.

USDA specialists identified two of the insects as a scaly cricket (Mogoplistrida sp.), and a gall midge (Xylodiplosis sp.), both actionable pests.

These insects are detrimental to plant growth and development and may not occur in the United States. Gall midges are tiny mosquito-like insects that attack plant tissue and form galls in which their larvae develop. Scaly crickets are small crickets that can’t fly, but eat the leaves of a wide variety of plant species.

The shipment will be fumigated to remove the pest threat before final distribution of the commodity into the United States.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation’s borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.

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