Pests and Diseases

APHIS proposes PCN program revisions

USDA has proposed restricting the use of the powerful fumigant methyl bromide for eradicating pale cyst nematodes in Eastern Idaho, and acknowledging the potential of a plant that stimulates “suicide” hatches by the tiny pests. The agency’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service included the suggested updates to the PCN eradication program in the preferred alternative of a supplemental environmental assessment, which will be open for public comment through May 28. Idaho’s PCN species, discovered in 2006, is known to exist in the U.S. only within a 7.5-mile radius encompassing prime potato production acres in Bingham and Bonneville counties. USDA is now using treatments to eradicate the harmful potato pest on 2,897 infested acres. More

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