A Glassy-winged Sharpshooter found has been found in Kings County for the first time in over ten years. It has the potential to devastate grape vineyards. The Kings County Department of Agriculture is putting out more yellow traps near Lemoore, where it was found, to see if there are more destructive pests in the area
The recently-found Glassy-winged Sharpshooter was spotted on a walnut tree in someone's front yard near 17th and Hanford Armona Road. Now the hunt is on to find out how bad the situation could be.
“Whenever you get the ID back and you see its Glassy-winged, it's, ‘Oh man, we got to make sure this doesn't infest the county,’” said Kings County Deputy Ag Commissioner, Jimmy Hook.
Hook was one of eight men canvassing a quarter-mile radius Monday. They went through the yards of several residents, including Bill Henry.
“They've been doing a house to house search, going through the bushes with nets,” said Henry.
Experts don’t know where the recently found Glassy-winged Sharpshooter came from. But so far, no others have been found in the traps hung along a one mile radius. The bugs can live on many different plants and trees, but they'll destroy grape vines.
“Glassy-winged is a carrier of a bacteria that causes Pierces Disease in grapes, which causes grape vines to die. It can be real detrimental,” said Hook.
Debbie Hughes lives close to where the insect was found. Even though she doesn't farm, she hopes this potential problem is quickly squashed.
“The vineyards are part of our agriculture community and I think it's very important,” said Hughes.
Workers will be closely monitoring the traps for at least the next month.