problems with pupae at the airport?

John Shuey jshuey at
Fri Jul 30 10:20:11 EDT 1999

> > gypsy moths that defoliate hundreds of thousands of acres of forests every
> > year - killing mature white oaks in the process.
> Semjase wrote:
> > Brought in by which moth enthusiast.  Sorry but the big boys did this one!
> Exactly what I was thinking. What documentation is there of any casual
> butterfly/moth/beetle enthusiasts being the source of any exotic pest outbreaks or similar
> eco-catastrophes?
I'm not sure which revisionist history books you guys are using, but gypsy moths were introduced
into the US by a hack amateur moth enthusiast/Naturalist who though he could hybridize species
in two different families to produce better silk production.  He choose a very prolific moth
from Europe to breed with our giant cocoon spinners in the US and or with the silk moth itself.
What better example do you need on misguided  "naturalist" screwing up the environment.  Just
think, if there had been a law in place to prevent this idiot from bringing in the gypsy moth
back in 1866, my state (Indiana) wouldn't have to douse the countryside with poison every year.
For information on the history of the introduction go to:
 I'm sure that the guy who wrought ecological disaster to the Eastern US was actually a nice
enough guy, with good personal intentions.  He just never conceived of the potential problems
associated with introducing an alien species into a world that lacks its natural predators.
Little could he predict that he could spawn an entire multi-million dollar industry devoted to
controlling the environmental damage he innocently and single-handedly unleashed.
My point is - neither can you!  Hence my very acidic original comments regarding the dangers of
stupidity combined with ignorance.  Telling people to simply blow off laws designed to benefit
society because the cost may impinge upon a very minor personal liberty seems to fit that
description to me.  Especially when you consider that permits are available for importing many
species - granted, you do have have to fill paper work and all  - and document that you can
adequately contain the live stock.  But I guess this is just to much to ask of free Americans (
the US variety of Americans at least).
If you are interested in exotic plants that degrade natural habitats US, go to -   where there is a searchable index of element stewardship
abstracts (ESAs) available for about 100 invasive species in the US.  Just read a few of these
plant-based disaster stories to get a sense of the botanical scope of unintended consequences.
These ESAs are written for use by professional natural resource managers - hence they are not
light reading.
> When was the last time the headlines read "international terrorists smuggle moths into
> country to wreak havoc on American forests" or "Clinton calls beetle terrorists worst threat
> to date to American agriculture"
> Paul Cherubini
Actually, while terrorists aren't likely to use insects as weapons, I do believe that Clinton is
on record as saying that exotic species are a tremendous burden to the US economy (remember the
Billions of dollars per year thing I mentioned in the original post).  There were major articles
on the Presidential initiative targeting exotic species introductions in US News and World
Reports and Newsweek about 1-2 months ago.
John Shuey

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