Have you noticed a chemical control failure or suspect insecticide resistance in redlegged earth mite (RLEM)? If so, we can help to test whether your local RLEM populations have evolved insecticide resistance.
Insecticide resistance in RLEM
Control of RLEM is largely reliant on three registered chemical classes; neonicotinoids (as seed dressings), synthetic pyrethroids (SPs) and organophosphates (OPs) (as foliar insecticides). Continued use of these limited chemical options has resulted in resistance issues.
Populations of RLEM that are resistant to either SPs or OPs, or possess resistance to both, are now present across large areas of Western Australia and parts of eastern Australia. This includes confirmed resistance in multiple redlegged earth mite populations from South Australia in 2017 and a recent detection in Victoria.
Free resistance screening service
Cesar Australia is offering a screening service to test for insecticide resistance in RLEM within South Australia, Victoria, NSW and Tasmania. The screening is at no-cost for Australian grain growers and advisers, thanks to funding from the GRDC.
We are particularly interested in hearing from growers or advisors who have had experienced recent or past chemical control failures or have paddocks that are frequently impacted by the mites, and often require spraying.
The service will not only help detect any resistance before it becomes widespread but will also help identify the best control options for growers.
Cesar Australia will be undertaking field trips to collect RLEM for resistance screening, so get in touch if you would like us to collect RLEM from your area.
How to send samples for screening
If you wish to send in mites for screening, package and post collected mites in a non-crushable container with some of host plant material.
More information about how to send in samples can be found here.
A collection kit can also be provided containing the necessary equipment to send mites in if required.
Please note: samples sent directly will only be screened for SP resistance given the large number of mites required for OP testing. Please get in touch regarding a collection if OP resistance is suspected.
Avoiding the evolution of insecticide resistance
Keeping track of resistance is essential for the ongoing management of RLEM.
To reduce the risk of your local mites evolving resistance, only spray paddocks when mite numbers warrant it, inspect paddocks post-spraying and report any suspected spray failures.
We encourage using non-chemical control tactics to assist in reducing reliance on chemical controls as outlined in the Redlegged earth mite insecticide resistance management strategy.
For further information or to access the testing service, please contact:
Dr Aston Arthur
0427 875 040