State, federal and local agricultural officials are set to begin efforts to eradicate the light brown apple moth from Cayucos.Starting next Monday, technicians will deploy twist ties infused with a pheromone. Typically, a pheromone is released by the female moth to attract a mate. But the pheromone used in this program will disrupt the moth’s breeding patterns. Eventually, the moth population will decline and collapse, farm officials say.
Experts will be available to answer questions at an open house from 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Cayucos Public Library, 310 B St.
Twist ties are placed on outdoor plants in neighborhoods where moths have been found. In addition to Cayucos, the pest has also been found in Los Osos and Nipomo.
The moth is a concern to agricultural officials because it can harm hundreds of different types of plants, particularly citrus, grapes and deciduous fruit. “The caterpillar stage of this insect can destroy, stunt or deform young seedlings, spoil the appearance of ornamental plants including oaks, redwoods and many other plants commonly found in urban landscapes, public parks and the natural environment,” states the county Department of Agriculture in a news release.
The moth is originally from Australia and is found in various parts of California. Farm officials say that last year, the insect damaged cane berries in Watsonville and grapes in Monterey County.
For more information, call 781-5910 or 434-5950.