California is constantly threatened by the introduction of invasive pests that threaten not only our agricultural industry but the economic well being of the state. Eradication efforts are extremely expensive and quarantines that are established by our trading partners significantly reduce our ability to export our produce around the world. Our High Risk Pest Exclusion division monitors the pathways whereby many of these pests are introduced into the state. Shipments of packages from around the world come into Fresno County through the various ground and air parcel carriers. Unmarked packages containing diseased plant material or insect pests are intercepted by our staff; often with an assist from our canine partners.
High Risk Beehive Inspections
Beehives from the Southern States are brought into California during the almond pollination season. Sometimes the hives are infested with Red Imported Fire Ants (RIFA) that establish nests in old termine tunnels in the hives themselves or the pallets that the hives sit on. Our staff inspects the hives as they are being placed in the orchards for pollination services. If ants are discovered, then the hives are required to be treated or destroyed to prevent RIFA from establishing new colonies in our California orchards. With the cooperation of the beekeeper, sometimes only infested hives bodies need to be treated or destroyed. The bees can be saved and transferred to clean hive boxes.