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Oriental fruit fly quarantine declared in Lakewood area

A 75-square-mile quarantine for the Oriental fruit fly has been declared in the Lakewood area of Los Angeles County following the detection of eight adult flies in the vicinity.

The boundaries are State Highway 90 to the north, Shoemaker Avenue to the east, South Alameda Street to the west, and Highway 1/East Atherton Street to the south. More specific, turn-by-turn boundaries and a map of the quarantine area are available on the CDFA Web site.

An eradication program is already underway and is relying largely on the “male attractant” technique, which consists of a minute amount of pesticide mixed with fruit fly attractant and squirted in small quantities on trees and utility poles. Male fruit flies are drawn to the mixture and eradicated. This treatment is being applied in an area of approximately 8.5 square miles around the core of the quarantine area. CDFA has been using this technique for more than 30 years. It has a 100 percent success rate in California, never failing to eradicate a fruit fly infestation. Crews are also removing fruit from trees in the area.

Agricultural shipments from the quarantine zone will be limited by specific regulations designed to stop the movement of potentially infested commodities. In addition, people moving through the quarantine zone are urged not to remove fruits and vegetables from the area.

The Oriental fruit fly can infest over 230 types of fruits and vegetables and, like many invasive species, poses a severe threat to the food supply and the environment.

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