SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. – Three European Grapevine Moths were trapped in southern Santa Clara County, leading to the establishment of an eradication program and proposed quarantine. The moths were found on September 15th and September 17th and their identification has been confirmed by the California Department of Food and Agriculture.
Native to Mediterranean Europe, the European grapevine moth (Lobesia botrana) was first found in the United States in September 2009 in Napa Valley. State-wide trapping ensued, and moths have been found in a number of counties, including Sonoma, Solano, Mendocino, San Joaquin, Merced and Fresno. Quarantine restrictions are now in place in each of these counties.
The boundaries of the proposed quarantine in Santa Clara County will generally be Llagas Road in Morgan Hill on the north, Foothill Avenue and New Avenue in Morgan Hill, San Martin and Gilroy on the east, Miller Avenue in Gilroy on the south, and the Santa Clara – Santa Cruz County line on the west. The quarantine will regulate the movement of bulk grapes, harvest bins, equipment and other articles that may harbor European Grapevine Moth.
Grape is the preferred host of European Grapevine Moth. Larvae feed inside the fruit and within the fruit clusters. This causes significant damage to the fruit and exposes it to secondary fungal infections.
Non-commercial grapes growing at homes near infested areas also pose a threat for spreading the European Grapevine Moth. Next week, State crews will contact residents to assist in removing and disposing of fruit from home yard grapevines. County biologists are contacting commercial growers in the regulated area to ensure compliance with the quarantine requirements.
The European Grapevine Moth typically has three generations per year and is not active in the cool winter months. Larvae from the last generation will overwinter as pupae in protected places, such as under bark, in soil crevices, or in leaf litter. The insect is now completing its last generation of the season and, therefore, most eradication activities will occur next spring.
Media Contact: Kevin O’Day, Acting Director, (408) 918-4622; Eric Wylde, Supervising Agricultural Biologist, (408) 918-4626
Posted: September 23, 2010