Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Latest Update: Napa vs. Mothra

We are receiving communications now. Local authorities have reported sightings of Mothra in Healdsberg. It appears they may have Mothra trapped. Anyone in the local vicinity stay inside your homes and secure yourself in a safe place. Keep away from all windows and doors. Stay inside until a full security sweep has been completed. Stay tuned for further details.

Yes, the European grapevine moth is still in Napa without proper papers or a passport and it’s not sipping lattes. Rather the moth larvae have been busy burrowing inside prized Napa grapes often infecting the fruit with botrytis or rot. Local farmers and vineyard managers have been playing mating God by using artificial pheromones designed to attract and confuse the male insects. The pheromones are injected into plastic twist ties and strategically placed throughout the vineyard.

So far one vineyard in Oakville has been destroyed. Napa growers soon will begin using pesticides on about 450 vineyards and other properties in an effort to eradicate the moth. Concerns moving forward are that environmental groups might attempt blocking the eradication program for the grapevine moth as they have done regarding the state's efforts to combat the Australian apple moth, a previous Napa invader.

Reports by the numbers have stated that there are more than 29,000 grapevine confirmed moths. Areas to be quarantined are Healdsberg (pending more moths found) Knights Valley and some surrounding agricultural land just over the border into Sonoma.

Until next time…

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