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Invasive beetle found in rice shipment at Va. port

Thursday - 11/22/2012, 10:37am  ET

NORFOLK, Va. - The U.S. Customs and Border Protection says a shipment of rice at the port of Hampton Roads will be destroyed or exported after agents found an invasive beetle.

The agency says in a news release that its agents recently found dead larva and cast skins of the Khapra beetle in a rice shipment from United Arab Emirates. The shipment was headed for Newark, N.J., but was diverted to Norfolk because of Hurricane Sandy.

The Khapra Beetle eats a variety of dried materials, is resistant to insecticides and can live without food for long periods.

Once the beetle is introduced into a region, Customs and Border Protection says it's difficult to control.

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