sustainability through science & innovation

temperate fruit surveillance pilot

Funding body: Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (through Plant Health Australia)

When an exotic plant pest is found in an agricultural region, producers and the associated supply chain can face substantial financial losses due to lost market access and quarantine regulations. This project is an initial ‘deep dive’ into what a regional exotic plant pest surveillance scheme for temperate fruit growing regions would look like and how it would run.

We will meet with key groups and people in the Goulburn Valley and Greater Sunraysia Region to confirm baseline monitoring conducted by advisors and farmers in each region and identify benefits and risks that would aid or hinder engagement of surveyors.

We will also develop basic surveillance guidelines that can be used by farm staff and agronomists to survey for exotic pests and collect evidence of absence data to aid market access maintenance.

Guidelines will be developed for:

  1. Spotted wing drosophila (temperate fruit hosts: Cherries and grape)
  2. Apple maggot (temperate fruit hosts: Apple, apricot, peach, and sour cherry)
  3. Plum pox virus (temperate fruit hosts: stone fruit)
  4. Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) (highly polyphagus, with pear and apple being favoured hosts)

Locals will be invited to attend mock surveillance exercises to learn more about the damage inflicted by these pests and to help ground truth these new surveillance guides. 

For further information email Dr Jessica Lye at