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USDA Issues Melon Fruit Fly Quarantine for Parts of Los Angeles County
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is amending its regulations to quarantine a part of Los Angeles County, Calif., for the melon fruit fly. APHIS, along with state and county agencies in California, have begun an intensive survey and eradication program in the infested area. As a result of this rule, the movement of certain items to destinations outside the quarantine area will be regulated. Regulated items include specific fruits, vegetables, and plants. The melon fruit fly, Bactrocera cucurbitae (Coquillett), is a destructive pest of fruits and vegetables, including melons, mangos, peppers, squash, cucumbers, beans, oranges, and peaches. The pest can damage the seedlings and young plants of squash, melons, and cucumbers, and reduce the yield and quality of the fruits and vegetables. Heavy infestations can result in the complete loss of these crops. The interim rule is scheduled to be published in the Feb. 22 Federal Register and becomes effective upon publication.