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California Department of Food and Agriculture

Media Contacts: Steve Lyle, CDFA Public Affairs (916) 654-0462 or,

California Department of Food and Agriculture
Release #09-037
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Plant material prohibited from being moved by growers, homeowners and nurseries

A new quarantine of approximately 38 square miles has been established in Davis following the detection of a second Light Brown Apple Moth in the area.  Approximately 2,780 square miles are now under quarantine within California.

A moth was first discovered in a trap in Davis on April 1st, triggering increased trapping efforts to determine if more moths were present. The second moth, detected within 2 miles of the first find on May 15th, prompted the quarantine. A map of the quarantine zone is available at:

The quarantine applies to residential and public properties as well as plant nurseries, farms and other commercial enterprises.  Residents are asked to consume fruits and vegetables from yards and gardens in the area rather than removing them from the property.  Landscapers and yard maintenance companies will be among the businesses placed under compliance agreements to ensure that yard waste is disposed of properly.  People who are unsure if they are within the quarantine zone are asked to assume that they are, or call the pest hotline at 1-800-491-1899 for more information.

State and federal quarantine regulations prohibit the movement of all nursery stock, all cut flowers, and all host fruits and vegetables and plant parts within or from the quarantined area unless it is certified as free from the pest by an agricultural official; is purchased at a retail outlet; or was produced outside the area and is passing through in accordance with accepted safeguards. Additionally, federal regulations apply to host commodities from the entire county if the commodities are moving interstate.

The Light Brown Apple Moth is native to Australia and is found in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Hawaii.  The range of host plants is broad with more than two-thousand plant species known to be susceptible to attack by this pest, and more than 250 crops. It threatens California’s environment—including cypress and oak trees—by destroying, stunting or deforming young seedlings and damaging new growth in the forest canopy. The moth also feeds on host plants and damages or spoils the appearance of ornamental plants, citrus, grapes, and deciduous fruit tree crops.  State and federal agriculture officials are currently developing sterile insect technology to combat the infestation.

For more information on the Light Brown Apple Moth, please visit


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California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814