Call for landholders to look out for fall armyworm

Minister for Agriculture and Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall has today encouraged primary producers to be vigilant in the management and presence of fall armyworm in the state’s north.

The reminder came after fall armyworm larvae was detected in maize crops at Croppa Creek and Tulloona, north of Moree and also Cudgen on the North Coast.

Mr Marshall said, with maize and sorghum cropping well underway in the region, it was critical to continue efforts to lookout for the pest.

“Our landholders are the first line of defense against fall armyworm. Vigilant producers actively looking for signs of the pest help widen the reach of our trapping network, making sure we detect any new cases as soon as possible,” Mr Marshall said.

“Farmers should monitor crops, particularly sorghum and maize, regularly for signs of fall armyworm damage, egg masses and larvae.”

Local Land Services Acting Agriculture and Biosecurity Business Partner Dale Kirby said last season fall armyworm was found in key summer cropping regions, but early detection and spraying with selective insecticides was key to managing impacts.

“Regular monitoring, particularly in maize and sorghum crops is critical at this time to optimise control costs. Growers and advisers should look for early signs of crop damage, such as windowing and shot holes in leaves,” Mr Kirby said

“It’s important to target larvae before they bury in leaf whorls and ears of maize.”

Small larvae can be difficult to identify, and growers are encouraged to keep suspect larvae on host crop leaves until they can be more easily identified by clear photographs of the head and tail sections.

If you suspect fall armyworm on your property, email images with your name, location, crop type and phone number to fallarmyworm@dpi.nsw.gov.au.

Farmers should contact Local Land Services or NSW Department of Primary Industries for further advice. For more, visit DPI's website.

Media: Connor McGoverne | 0408 185 304

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