Businesses and residents in the North Fremantle area are encouraged to keep a look out for brown marmorated stink bug following a recent detection of the pest in the area.
An exotic stink bug was detected at Fremantle Port in a surveillance trap during a routine surveillance inspection undertaken by Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources biosecurity officers.
The WA Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) is working closely with the Australian Department on increased surveillance to ensure the pest has not spread.
Additional specialised traps are in place with no further detections of the pest to date.
DPIRD A/Chief Plant Biosecurity Officer Darryl Hardie said the brown marmorated stink bug posed a risk to agriculture and the environment, attacking a range of plants.
It is also a nuisance pest as it seeks sheltered places to overwinter in cold temperatures such as inside homes, vehicles, machinery or sheds, often in large numbers.
“Residents and businesses in the North Fremantle area are asked to keep an eye out for the pest and report anything unusual,” Dr Hardie said.
“An adult stink bug is about 12-17mm long, usually mottled brown in colour, has a shield-shaped appearance with distinctive black and white banding around the outer edge of the abdomen and white bands on its antennae.
“It produces a foul smelling odour when disturbed. They can be easily confused with other brown stink bugs that are present in Australia.”
Brown marmorated stink bug is native to eastern Asia but was introduced to North America in the mid-1990s and more recently to Europe.
While not established in Australia, it is known to stowaway in cargo coming out of the northern hemisphere between September and April each year. Strict import conditions are in place.
There are a number of reporting options.
Anyone finding this pest while unpacking imported goods, should secure the package, not move it and report it quickly to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources’ SEE. SECURE. REPORT. Hotline on 1800 798 636.
Residents can report any unusual detections using the DPIRD’s MyPestGuideTM Reporter app, available to download for free from the Google Play store and Apple iTunes store. Alternatively, they can contact the Pest and Disease Information Service on 9368 3080.
More information is available at the department website agric.wa.gov.au.
Jodie Thomson/Katrina Bowers, media liaison, +61 (0)8 9368 3937