Effective immediately, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is issuing a revised Federal Order that expands the existing imported fire ant (IFA) quarantine areas in North Carolina, Oklahoma, and Tennessee, and better defines a portion of the quarantine area in California. APHIS is taking this action to prevent the interstate spread of IFA.
The following list describes the actions in this Federal Order:
California: Corrects a boundary in the Moreno Valley area of Riverside County.
North Carolina: Extends the IFA quarantine area to the entire county for Catawba, Northampton, Rowan, and Rutherford Counties and to portions of Burke County.
Oklahoma: Extends the IFA quarantine area to the entire county for Latimer County.
Tennessee: Extends the IFA quarantine area to the entire county for Cocke, Dekalb, and Wilson Counties and to portions of Union County in Tennessee.
APHIS is taking these actions based upon verification from the respective state departments of agriculture that IFA are present and established in the areas listed above.
Under IPPC standards, Imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta Buren, S. richteri Forel, and hybrids of these species) are pests that are considered present: only in some parts of the United States and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.