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Parts of L.A. quarantined for fruit flies

August 10, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
A wide area of Los Angeles County is under quarantine because invasive Oriental fruit flies have been detected.The quarantine affects the Pasadena and San Marino areas. It spans 89 square miles and is bordered on the west by Figueroa Street; on the south by Interstate 10; on the east by The Big Santa Anita Wash; and on the north by an imaginary line in the foothills.

The California Department of Food and Agriculture is asking residents living in the quarantine area to not move host plants and materials.

"We urge home gardeners to comply with these measures by consuming homegrown produce at home and not moving it from their property," said CDFA Secretary A.G. Kawamura in a news release.

"This will protect their fellow gardeners and help ensure that the infestation will not spread to nearby areas where it could affect California's food supply," Kawamura added.

Workers will spray a small patch of fly attractant mixed with a very small dose of pesticide to light poles, street trees and similar surfaces in order to attract the male flies. Once the male flies consume the mixture, they die.

The Oriental fruit fly is widespread throughout much of the mainland of Southern Asia and neighboring islands including Sri Lanka and Taiwan. It is also found in Hawaii.

Most commonly, pests enter the state in fruits and vegetables brought back illegally by travelers. There's no word when the quarantine will end.

Residents with questions can call the pest hotline at 1-800-491-1899.


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