Pest insects

Pest insects can have adverse and damaging impacts on agricultural production and market access, the natural environment, and our lifestyle. Pest insects may cause problems by damaging crops and food production, parasitising livestock, or being a nuisance and health hazard to humans.

Western Australia is free from some of the world's major pest insects. Biosecurity measures on your property are vital in preventing the spread of insects.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development provides:

  • biosecurity/quarantine measures at the WA border to prevent the entry of pest insects
  • where relevant post border biosecurity measures
  • advice on widespread pest insects present in the state.

For advice on pest insects search our website, the Western Australian Organism List or contact our Pest and Disease Information Service (PaDIS).

For diagnostic services, please contact our Diagnostic Laboratory Services.

Articles

  • Garden weevil (Phlyctinus callosus) was accidentally introduced into Western Australia from South Africa. This weevil is now a severe pest of grapevines and other horticultural crops.

  • The wingless grasshopper (Phaulacridium vittatum) is a native insect widely distributed throughout the higher rainfall coastal areas of southern Australia.

  • The Western Australian grain storage industry is focused on sealed storage and fumigation to achieve the federally mandated ‘nil tolerance’ for live insects in exports.

  • Cockchafers belonging to the genus Heteronyx are typically not regarded as a pest of agriculture. However, two have been seen as occasional pests, with H.

  • Citrus gall wasp is a pest of citrus trees grown in backyards and orchards. Citrus tree owners are encouraged to implement control measures on their property to reduce the threat to the citrus indu

  • It has been estimated that between one quarter and one third of the world grain crop is lost each year during storage. Much of this is due to insect attack.

  • Queensland fruit fly is not present in Western Australia, but is occasionally detected and requires an eradication response to contain and prevent further spread.

  • Western Australia has a low prevalence of citrus pests and diseases compared to most other countries.

  • In Western Australia's Mediterranean-type climate, the survival of pests and diseases over summer is often critical in determining pest outbreaks and disease epidemics in broadacre crops.

  • Heavy infestation of aphids caused significant yield loss to canola in a high rainfall environment

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