Politics

Federal Government Spending Millions To Combat Plant Pests In Florida

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File photo of Monarch butterflies on a leaf. (credit: PRAKASH MATHEMA/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of Monarch butterflies on a leaf. (credit: PRAKASH MATHEMA/AFP/Getty Images)

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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — U.S. Department of Agriculture will spend $6.7 million to prevent the introduction and spread of plant pests that threaten Florida’s agriculture and environment.

The USDA made the announcement Thursday.

Officials said several projects will help prevent invasive species from taking over. The projects include enhancing inspection activities, additional detector dog training, developing tools to identify citrus pests and conducting outreach programs for international travelers who may unknowingly bring plan-based pests into Florida.

Florida’s warm climate allows a variety of non-native species — both plant and animal — to thrive. Sometimes the non-native species kills or threatens native plants and animals.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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