U.S. Customs Agriculture Specialists intercept rare pest at port of entry

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

POSTED: Tuesday, November 26, 2013 - 9:50am

UPDATED: Wednesday, November 27, 2013 - 10:28am

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agriculture specialists at the Progreso-Donna Port of Entry recently intercepted a rare pest only discovered for the third time in the U.S. in a shipment of cucumbers.

The interception occurred on Nov. 20, 2013 at the import lot at Progreso International Bridge. CBP agriculture specialists conducted an examination of a commercial shipment of cucumbers. During an examination of the trailer floor, a CBP agriculture specialist discovered a live insect. The pest was submitted for identification by a U.S. Department of Agriculture entomologist. The initial identification was later confirmed by a national specialist that the insect was Tominotus hogenhoferi (Signoret) (Cydnidae), a quarantine significant pest which had only been intercepted twice before in the U.S., in Florida. CBP refused entry for the shipment and it was returned to Mexico.

Tominotus hogenhoferi belongs to the Cydnidae family, known as shield bugs or burrowing bugs which are known to feed on plant roots and are distinguished by piercing, sucking mouthparts. The insect was identified as a quarantine significant pest requiring action by CBP, in this case re-exportation to Mexico.

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