sustainability through science & innovation


08 Mar 2019

Do your bit with the Goulburn Valley Biosecurity Blitz!

New or exotic plant pests can have a devastating impact on rural communities. Production impacts, disruption of integrated pest management plans, out-of-spec harvests, loss of market access, and pest containment measures are possible consequences of an exotic pest establishing in a production region.

In April 2019 you are invited to participate in a two week Goulburn Valley ‘Biosecurity Blitz’. This Blitz will involve biosecurity training, with participants learning how to identify some key exotic pest threats to horticulture in our region.

View the #GVBioBlitz2019 flyer here.

We are encouraging home gardeners, commercial growers, agricultural advisors, and anyone with an interest in safeguarding our horticulture industry to opt into the GVBioBlitz 2019.

To kick off the GVBioBlitz2019 cesar, in partnership with Agriculture Victoria and Fruit Growers Victoria will hold exotic pest identification training and mock surveillance exercises at the Agriculture Victoria research facility in Tatura on Wednesday 10 April.

This free session will run from 3–5pm and participants will receive training in identification of exotic plant pests, conducting surveillance, GPS tagging of monitoring sites, collecting and storing suspect pest samples, and maintaining good biosecurity between farms and regions.

Following the training session participants will be invited to continue monitoring for two weeks and will be supplied with an easy to use surveillance guide and record keeping sheet.  

The training and two week biosecurity blitz in the Goulburn Valley will focus on the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) and plum pox virus. Both of these pests have the potential to greatly impact horticultural businesses in the Goulburn Valley.

Fortunately, these pests have never been found in the Goulburn Valley. In fact, plum pox virus is not found anywhere in Australia. BMSB was recently detected in some locations in the Melbourne metro area associated with imported goods and is under active surveillance and control by Agriculture Victoria.

Building community awareness of what to look out for and how to report will increase the chance of early detection and, therefore, effective control efforts.

Keeping our production regions free of damaging exotic pests is crucial for the health and continuation of our rural industries. As a capacity building initiative, the GVBioBlitz2019 will further raise awareness about these threats and the importance of reporting suspect pests.

This project is being delivered with support from the Australian Government’s investment in improving biosecurity surveillance and analysis through the Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper, as part of work to develop a new national biosecurity surveillance strategy for Australia’s temperate fruit industries.

Anyone interested, whether you are a grower, home gardener, or somebody keen to learn, can book a place at the training session at

For more information get in touch with the cesar office on 03 9349 4723