Half of Sonoma County’s vineyards soon could come under quarantine due to the European grapevine moth, a pest that infests the Napa Valley which has now also been found in six other counties, most recently Merced.
Grape growers have been told that 1,000 Sonoma acres are likely to be quarantined and although the exact boundary lines have yet to be spelled out, officials say that it is likely to take the shape of one single large quarantine area.
The quarantine could take in about 30,000 acres of grapes, about half the county’s vineyard land.
The expansion of the quarantine is due to new moths found around Windsor and Healdsburg and to new federal rules.
Those rules, proposed by moth experts advising the U.S. Department of Agriculture, now expand the quarantine boundary from three to five miles in all directions from a moth found in an infested area.
Under the new rules, officials are predicting an overlap of the five-mile radiuses marking moths found around Sonoma, Kenwood, Calistoga, Windsor and Healdsburg.