Submitted to: International Congress of Entomology
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/15/2008
Publication Date: 7/6/2008
Citation: Floyd,J.; Bloem, K.A.; Bloem, S.; Carpenter J.E.; Hight S.D.; Bello, A.; Enkerlin, W. 2008. An international cooperative effort to protect Opuntia cactus resources in the Southwest and Mexico from the South American cactus moth, Cactoblastis cactorum. XXIII International Congress of Entomology, Durban, South Africa. Meeting Abstract. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: The South American Cactus moth, Cactoblastis cactorum, was intentionally introduced to an island in the Caribbean in the 1950’s and eventually made its way to the Florida peninsula by 1989. In 2004, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and Agriculture Research Service (ARS) began a joint effort to establish a barrier to its spread along the US Gulf Coast before reaching areas of significant Opuntia diversity. Since 2006, the Mexican government’s Secreteria de Agricultura, Ganaderia, Desarrollo-Rural, Pesca y Alimentación (SAGARPA), through the North American Plant Protection Organization (NAPPO), has been cooperating to help fund the monitoring and prevention of the spread of this pest release in Mexico. Other cooperation has occurred with state departments of agriculture, agencies, and environmental groups that manage lands in trapping and setting up sentinel sites for visual monitoring of plant populations for early stages of infestation. The program has been successful in slowing the spread and raising awareness with other cooperators such as national parks, wildlife refuges, ranchers, nursery operators, and home owners.