MEXICO: Fly Fight

Two months ago, the 2,000-tree lemon and orange grove of Gabriel Ramirez, near Valles, on the Pan American Highway, was a rich and blooming place. Last week, like most orchards in the lush, hot valley, Ramirez' trees were soot-black with the leaf-ravaging larvae of the mosca prieta (citrus black fly).

Mexico City newspapers awoke to the threat of a national disaster: Mexican agriculture faced a ruinous fruit-fly plague. Nearly 2,000,000 of the country's 16 million citrus trees were infested. U.S. citrus growers in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, with 18,500,000 trees just 250 miles north of the infested area, screamed...

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