US flag Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Archived Content

In an effort to keep CBP.gov current, the archive contains content from a previous administration or is otherwise outdated.

CBP Agriculture Specialists in Puerto Rico Intercept Dangerous Pests in Commercial Shipments

Release Date: 
October 6, 2011

Aguadilla, PR - U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists working at the Aguadilla air cargo facility intercepted several pests during separate inspections this week. One of these interceptions had never been reported at the cargo facility here.

An air-breathing land snail known as Succinea costaricana.

On Oct. 3, CBP Agriculture Specialists examining a shipment of imported fresh flowers from Colombia intercepted several insects considered actionable pests. Some of the identified insects, mentioned by their scientific names, are: Frankliniella sp., Noctuidae sp., Aphididae sp. (aphids), and Thrips sp., all of them actionable pests.

That same day, while inspecting fresh vegetables (leaf) from Costa Rica, another actionable pest was intercepted, this time a first in port interception. The insect was identified by USDA-APHIS-PPQ as Succinea costaricana von Martens (Succineidae). Succinea costaricana is a species of air-breathing land snail, a terrestrial gastropod in the family Succineidae, the amber snails.

Insects are determined to be actionable because they are not prevalent (and/or established) in the U.S. and Territories and we don't want them to be. These invasive insects can potentially cause tremendous damage to a wide variety of crops and natural resources.

"These two interceptions are some of the most recent examples of the careful diligence our agriculture specialists exhibit as they examine imported shipments for harmful pests and diseases," said Mirella Couto, San Juan assistant director Field Operations for Trade.

CBP agriculture specialists are determined to safeguard American Agriculture by demonstrating careful diligence as they examine imported shipments detecting and preventing entry into the country of plant pests and exotic foreign animal diseases that could harm our agricultural resources. They do this with inspection and prevention efforts designed to keep prohibited agricultural items from entering the United States. These items (pests and/or diseases), whether in commercial cargo or as "hitchhikers" with an international airline/vessel, passenger or a pedestrian crossing the border, could cause serious damage to America's crops, livestock, and the environment.

For more detailed information on these and other pests, please visit the USDA/APHIS Web site. (USDA/APHIS website)

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017