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 WVDA 2018 Cooperative Agricultural Pest Surveys Underway

5/2/2018

Charleston, WV – The West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA) has started
conducting early detection trappings and surveys throughout the state. The goal of the
Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey program (CAPS) is to detect any new, non-native
pests and to monitor the impact of native agricultural pests. This includes: specific exotic
plants, diseases and weeds identified as threats to forests and agriculture lands in West
Virginia.
 
"Our staff is on the front line of protecting some of our most valuable natural resources.
The sooner we detect invasive species, the better we can mitigate damage," said
Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt. "The hope is to preserve West Virginia’s
natural beauty for generations to come.”
 
The program functions as a cooperative agreement with the United States Department of
Agriculture (USDA), Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service on specific pest-control
issues. The program aims to support export certification programs and contributes data
to the National Agricultural Pest Information System (NAPIS) and Integrated Plant Health
Information System (IPHIS) computer databases.
 
"We have always tried to take a proactive approach to detecting these species so we can
incorporate control measures earlier,” said WVDA Plant Industries Director Tim Brown.
"We cannot fully stop all these pests, but we can limit the impact they have on our forests
and farming lands."
 
The WVDA staff, through CAPS and Farm Bill agreements, will be setting over 500
insect monitoring traps in varying trees and crops to screen for any new introductions of
harmful plant pests. This year we will be placing traps in cherry, oak and pine trees as
well as corn, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, soybean and small grains. Trappings will take
place from May to early September.
 
For more information on these surveys please, contact Susan Parker at 304-788-1066,
sparker@wvda.us.
The West Virginia Department of Agriculture protects plant, animal and human health through a
variety of scientific, regulatory and consumer protection programs. The Commissioner of Agriculture
is one of six statewide elected officials who sits on the Board of Public Works..


Contact Information

Crescent Gallagher, Communications Director, cgallagher@wvda.us, 304-558-3708 or 304-380-3922