Homeland Security agents stationed at the Port of Baltimore uncovered a pest that could’ve put trees at risk in Maryland, and beyond.
While inspecting a shipment of ceramic tiles from China on Oct. 31, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers discovered a suspected longhorn beetle. About two weeks later, a government entomologist later confirmed the identity of the menacing bug via testing.
If allowed to take root on U.S. soil and reproduce, longhorn beetles could pose a risk to orchards on a large scale.
“They are also known to attack a wide range of forest and landscaping trees, boring holes into their trunks, and eventually killing them,” according to a Homeland Security Bulletin.
Upon discovery, the shipment was immediately quarantined and sent to federal inspection facilities where it was identified as a threat. The tile will now be “re-exported,” which we assume means that it will be sent back.
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