The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued a notice confirming that it has discovered Asian Gypsy Moth (AGM) egg masses on three vessels arriving from Japan during July and August 2018. The two of them were vehicle transport ships entering into Baltimore and the other one, for which the vessel-type was not clear, was inspected at Houston.
On one of the vehicle transport ships, agriculture specialists during a routine inspection discovered Lymantri mathura Moore, commonly known as the Rosy Gypsy Moth, and a first reported encounter of this moth species in the United States. Entomologists identified the species through DNA barcoding.
The other three egg masses CBP discovered on the ship were Asian Gypsy Moth (AGM). Both moth species are destructive pests.
In those cases, all viable eggs within AGM were intercepted by CBP and the introduction of harmful pest into US was quickly prevented.
Asian gypsy moth (AGM) is a serious forest pest prevalent in some seaport areas in East Asia including Japan, Russia and so on. If introduced in countries where it does not exist naturally, AGM would have significant impacts on their agriculture and the natural environment.
According to the USDA, AGM poses a significant threat to forests and urban landscapes as it is known to be extremely mobile – females can travel up to 25 miles per day – can lay egg masses that could yield hundreds of hungry caterpillars, and is itself a voracious eater that attacks more than 500 species of trees and plants.
The vessel made a June port call in Japan, a high-risk AGM area.
It is essential for the Members, whom trade or intend to arrive from the risk areas, to be aware of above prior entering into US,
…said Japan P&I Club in an alert.