ISLAMABAD   -   Seeds that float in the air can hitchhike in unusual places — like the air-intake grille of a refrigerated shipping container. A team of researchers from the USDA Forest Service, Arkansas State University, and other organizations recently conducted a study that involved vacuuming seeds from air-intake grilles over two seasons at the Port of Savannah, Georgia. The viability of such seeds is of significant interest to federal regulatory and enforcement agencies, and the project required a shared stewardship approach. Imported refrigerated shipping containers are inspected by the U.S. Customs & Border Protection, Agriculture Program (Department of Homeland Security). The research team worked closely with this agency, as well as the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and the Georgia Ports Authority. Their findings were recently published in the journal Scientific Reports. Seeds from 30 plant taxa were collected from the air-intake grilles, including seeds of wild sugarcane (Saccharumspontaneum), a grass on the USDA Federal Noxious Weed List.