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APHIS Establishes Mexican Fruit Fly (Anastrepha ludens) Quarantines in Hargill and Lyford, Willacy County, Texas, and Expands the Quarantine Area in Cameron, Hidalgo, and Willacy Counties, Texas

FOR INFORMATION AND ACTION
DA-2022-20
June 27, 2022

To:  State and Territory Agricultural Regulatory Officials

Establishment of Lyford, Willacy County Quarantine.

On April 29, 2022, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) established a Mexican fruit fly (Anastrepha ludens or Mexfly) quarantine in Lyford, Willacy County, Texas. APHIS and TDA established the Lyford quarantine following the confirmed detection of a mature mated female Mexfly from a trap in a sweet orange tree in a residential area. The Lyford quarantine encompassed 113.85 square miles with 45.2 acres of commercial citrus. 

Expansion of Quarantine Areas.

On April 29, APHIS and TDA expanded two Cameron County, Texas, quarantine areas following the confirmed detections of adult Mexflies from traps and larvae from fruit cuttings from various citrus trees in residential areas and citrus groves. The Brownsville quarantine area expanded from 132.2 sq. mi. to 153.74 sq. mi.; there was no change in the affected commercial citrus acreage. The Harlingen quarantine area expanded from 190.4 sq. mi. to 245.02 sq. mi.; the affected citrus acreage increased from 1,769.9 acres to 1,938.6 acres. 

On May 12, APHIS and TDA further expanded the Lyford, Willacy County, Texas, quarantine area following the confirmed detection of an immature Mexfly from a sour orange at a residence in Sebastian, Willacy County. This expansion caused the Harlingen and Lyford quarantine areas to merge, which created the Harlingen/Lyford quarantine in Cameron and Willacy Counties. 

On May 27, APHIS and TDA merged the Harlingen/Lyford quarantine with the Weslaco, Hidalgo County, Texas, quarantine area following the confirmed detection of a mated female Mexfly from a trap in a citrus tree in a residential area. The Harlingen/Lyford/Weslaco quarantine encompasses 506.6 sq. mi with 3,314.7 acres of commercial citrus in Cameron, Hidalgo, and Willacy Counties. 

Establishment of Hargill, Willacy County Quarantine.

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. The Hargill quarantine encompasses 91.12 sq. mi. with 2,616.3 acres of commercial citrus. 

APHIS works cooperatively with TDA to eradicate transient Mexfly populations through various control actions per program protocols and in applying safeguarding measures and restrictions on the interstate movement or entry into foreign trade of regulated articles from these areas. These actions are necessary to prevent the spread of Mexfly to non-infested areas of the United States. 

The following website contains a description of all the current Federal fruit fly quarantine areas: 

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant-health/ff-quarantine 

For additional information on the Mexfly quarantine area, please contact Fruit Fly National Policy Manager, Richard Johnson, at (301) 851-2109 or richard.n.johnson@usda.gov.  

/s/

Dr. Mark L Davidson
Deputy Administrator
Plant Protection and Quarantine


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