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Asian Citrus Psyllid

The Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP), a tiny insect that vectors the always fatal citrus disease huanglongbing (HLB), or citrus greening, was first detected in San Luis, AZ in October of 2009. A portion of Yuma County was placed under State, then subsequently Federal, quarantine for ACP shortly after these detections. Between October 2009 and June 2010, ten locations, mostly residential, within the area of Yuma County, AZ were found with ACP. Each site was eradicated, and the last detection of ACP in Arizona was in June 2010. Both the Arizona Department of Agriculture and USDA-APHIS-PPQ cooperatively maintain nearly 10,000 traps in Arizona to determine the presence or absence of ACP. None of the psyllids detected were found to be infected with HLB, and sampling of citrus plant material also has been negative for the disease, so Arizona remains free of HLB at this time as well.

In mid-2010, the USDA-APHIS-PPQ, along with regulators, university and industry stakeholders in each of the citrus producing states, established a safeguarding protocol to allow the production and movement of clean citrus nursery stock for the retail nursery trade and use as commercial grove replacements. This protocol was finally codified in Federal rule in April of 2011, allowing Arizona citrus nurseries in the Yuma quarantine area to produce clean citrus nursery stock and move it intra- and inter-state. This is the first major modification of the Federal ACP quarantine since it was levied on a portion of Yuma County, AZ in October 2009. The quarantine area for ACP in Arizona has not changed in sometime, and if the current absence of ACP detections continues, Arizona will petition USDA-APHIS-PPQ for removal of the quarantine in June 2012; two years after the last detection.