Plant Health Australia has developed the Exotic Pest Identification and Surveillance Guide for Tropical Horticulture with funding from the Australia Government Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.

Inspecting crops for signs of new pests is one way growers can protect Australia’s plant industries from exotic pests, as early detection and reporting improves the chances of successfully containing or eradicating new pests.

The guide is in two sections:

  • Biosecurity and surveillance – which describes key aspects of on-farm biosecurity, how to undertake pest surveillance in the field and packing sheds, handling pest samples and reporting unusual finds.
  • Identification of key exotic pests – which provides information on the high priority exotic pests for several of the horticultural crops grown in northern Australia. The guide has been developed to increase your awareness of these pests and provide you with information on what to do if you suspect you have found one.

The crops specifically covered in the guide are: avocados, bananas, citrus, lychees, mangoes, melons, papaya, passionfruit, pineapples and tropical vegetables. Exotic fruit flies get a special mention, as pests of multiple tropical crops.