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Psyllids found in Orange County; insect could devastate California citrus industry

August 25, 2009 | 11:14 am

A tiny insect that often carries a tree-killing disease and threatens to destroy California's $1.6-billion citrus industry has moved into Orange County.

Agricultural officials said today that they recently trapped five adult Asian citrus psyllids on a lemon tree at a home in Santa Ana, the farthest north they have found the aphid-like insect.

"Having it as far north as Santa Ana means that the pest could be anywhere in the entire Los Angeles basin. This is not good. We are not containing the pest," said Ted Batkin, president of the Citrus Research Board.

The trade group is working with the California Department of Food and Agriculture to control the bug and prevent the disease from gaining a hold in the state.

Full story by Times staff writer Jerry Hirsch: Psyllids found in Orange County; insect could devastate California citrus industry


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