RIVERSIDE (CBS) — The discovery of a long-feared insect pest in a citrus tree near Redlands has prompted a quarantine order that prevents people from taking homegrown fruit out of neighborhoods in western Riverside County, according to reports on Saturday.
The Riverside Press-Enterprise said 1,780 square miles of Riverside County, lying west of the Coachella Valley, have been quarantined.
The move is a hoped-for check to the spread of the Asian citrus psyllid, a moth-sized parasite that does not by itself harm citrus trees. The bug, however, spreads a disease called huanglingbing, which causes a tree to put out bitter, shriveled fruit, and then die.READ MORE: LA County Students Exposed To COVID-19 Can Continue To Attend In-Person Classes, Health Officials Announce
KNX 1070’s Pat Haslam reports psyllids have already been found in most of Southern California.READ MORE: Woman Stabbed To Death At Senior Living Community In Baldwin Hills
Huanglingbing has devastated citrus crops in Florida.
Under terms of the quarantine, no home-picked fruit can be taken out of the area.MORE NEWS: One Of The World's Largest Homes Is About To Go Up For Sale In Bel Air
(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)