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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A state of emergency has been declared in southern Miami-Dade due to an infestation of Oriental fruit flies which has the potential to attack hundreds of crops.

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The first fruit fly was detected August 26th, according to Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam’s Office. Since then, 158 flies have been detected, many in the Redland area of the county.

Officials have quarantined an 85-square-mile area, treated certain areas and removed fruit where flies have been detected.

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Fruit flies lay eggs in fruits and vegetables. They’re considered one of the world’s most serious pests due to the potential economic harm. The fly attacks more than 430 different fruits, vegetables and nuts.

Putnam also said a pesticide certified for use in organic farming will be sprayed in certain areas.

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