NOGALES, ARIZ.—U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists at the Port of Nogales commercial facility intercepted a significant citrus pest, an Asian citrus psyllid (Diaphorina citri) (Kuwayama), while inspecting a shipment of limes Tuesday. The commercial shipment of limes was targeted for an enforcement inspection when an adult specimen was located.
Asian citrus psyllid is capable of transmitting Citrus Greening Disease, which can lead to the death of infected trees. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, citrus greening has been reported in Mexico.
"This interception is significant because Citrus Greening Disease is considered one of the most serious diseases for citrus," said Agriculture Program Manager Tracy Filippi. "Other than tree removal, there is no effective cure for the disease, so the potential for widespread damage from this psyllid can be very high."
A U.S. Department of Agriculture entomologist confirmed the identity of the Asian citrus psyllid on Tuesday. CBP agriculture specialists work closely with USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Plant Protection and Quarantine, to protect our nation's agriculture resources against the introduction of foreign plant pests and animal diseases. The importer opted to have the shipment returned to Mexico.
For more on the USDA, APHIS, PPQ program, please visit: USDA, APHIS, PPQ Program
CBP agriculture specialists have extensive training and experience in the biological sciences and agricultural inspection. On a typical day, they inspect tens of thousands of international air passengers, as well as air and sea cargo being imported to the United States.
To learn more about CBP agriculture specialists, please visit Agriculture Specialist
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 the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.