Insect Epidemic Threatens Nations Wildlife

October 19th, 2015

Insect Epidemic Threatens Nations Wildlife

The nation’s agricultural industry is in a panic over a recent rise in non-native invasive insects threatening America’s crops, plants, and trees. “They are a serious threat to our economy,” says APHIS spokeswoman Abbey Powell. “Federal and state authorities are tirelessly working together to stop the spread of invasive pests.” One of the most seriously affected businesses is America’s orange industry. The Asian citrus psyllid is the main culprit, spreading an incurable disease called huanglongbing, also called citrus green, to orange trees around the country. The nation’s orange industry has lost more than $4 billion in the last few years and seen its lowest harvest in two decades due to the massive destruction of crops. And oranges aren’t the only crop in danger. The disease-carrying bugs pose a serious threat to all citrus fruits. We may soon see the extinction of one of America’s most popular food staples, orange juice.

Another plant under siege is the coconut trees in Hawaii. Less than two years ago a rhinoceros-looking black beetle was detected, and has since then become a huge threat to the state’s coconut industry. Also from Hawaii, the light brown apple moth is an especially destructive critter. The insect is a threat to scores of crops including avocadoes, grapes, and raspberries. Thousands of plants and trees have also perished at the hand of this voracious bug.  As you can see, the epidemic doesn’t stop at our crops. Insects are also ravaging our trees and forests. The Asian longhorn beetle is currently menacing millions of acres of forest resources in the North Atlantic states.

Steps are being taken to eliminate these pests, and officials say citizens can help the effort in small ways by preventing the spread of these bugs. You can find tips on how you can help here.

One Response to “Insect Epidemic Threatens Nations Wildlife”

  1. Will says:

    “We may soon see the extinction of one of America’s most popular food staples, orange juice.”

    What?! No!! I seriously don’t want to believe that that’s actually true.

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