Tuesday, January 28, 2003

Moth Man!

A man in New Zealand has been charged with recklessly violating the NZ Biosecurity Act by repeatedly importing foreign moth and butterfly eggs. According to this article from HortNews, one of the species was the pale tussock moth (I am assuming they mean Dasychira pudibunda, but in the U.S., this common name refers to Halysidota tesselaris), considered to be at high risk of infesting fruit trees and birch trees if allowed to escape (The country has previously dealt with tussock moth outbreaks). The culprit, who was keeping the creatures in jars in his bedroom (bleah!!!), claimed ignorance of the laws barring insect imports, but did admit to being aware of the danger if any insects escaped. There is currently an effort underway to publicize the UK company that provided the eggs, and to ban them from doing further business in New Zealand.

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