Nogalez, AZ (KPHO) — An insect never before found in the U.S. has been discovered in a commercial shipment of celery from Mexico.
Specialists from U.S. Customs and Border Protection were inspecting the cargo that was attempting to pass through Arizona’s Port of Douglas on March 20 when they spotted the bug.
Three days later, local U.S. Department of Agriculture specialists identified the specimen as Claudinerobius slateri, the official name for the agricultural bug.
On Monday, the USDA’s National Identification Services confirmed it was the first time the pest has been intercepted at a U.S. port of entry.
“These interceptions are exactly what keep Nogales CBP agriculture specialists motivated every day to protect our nation from invasions of harmful foreign insects, as well as plant and animal diseases,” said Port Director Guadalulpe Ramirez.
The shipment was fumigated, according to the CBP news release.