A variety of pathways exist for the introduction of nonindigenous insects, ticks, and mites of veterinary importance into the United States. The most prominent includes the natural migration of mosquitoes and flies by the flight of adults, ectoparasites entering the country on wildlife transport hosts, and accidental introductions on animals legally imported through United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) quarantine facilities. Examples of the establishment and subsequent eradication of exotic pests of livestock are presented to illustrate the critical role of the USDA in protecting American agriculture with particular emphasis on the southern cattle tick, Boophilus microplus (Canestrini), the cattle tick, B. annulatus (Say), and the screwworm, Cochliomyia hominivorax (Coquerel). Priority group rating of nonindigenous arthropod pests and disease vectors are discussed. Although the primary responsibility for preventing the introduction and establishment of arthropods that affect livestock and poultry rests on the shoulders of USDA professionals, insect surveys by extension entomologists along with observations by research specialists and producers are also important in detecting exotic arthropod species. Animal health professionals from all sectors of the livestock and poultry industries may well be the first line of defense from the introduction of nonindigenous arthropods and the diseases they transmit.
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Vol. 37 • No. 1