Mystery Pest Eating Its Way Through $1B Texas Crop
A tiny bug that has mystified Texas farmers and agriculture researchers is threatening to eat a big hole in the state’s economy.
According to a news release from Texas A&M University, the insect of unknown origin – which measures about 1/16 inch – is poised to inflict big damage to the billion-dollar Texas grain sorghum crop.
“For now, we’re calling this pest the sugarcane aphid,” Raul Villanueva, an entomologist with A&M’s AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Weslaco, said in the release.
It was first seen last year, but researchers don’t know if it’s new or if it just switched hosts, from sugarcane to grain sorghum, Villanueva said.