Carnarvon and Geraldton residents have rallied to support their local horticulture industry by assisting surveillance efforts for the tomato potato psyllid.
Department of Agriculture and Food Irrigated Agriculture regional director Mike Bowley said the psyllid was a destructive insect pest which fed on a range of plants including potato, tomato, eggplant, capsicum, chilli, tamarillo and sweet potato.
It was first detected in Perth in February and has now been confirmed on 70 commercial and residential properties, mainly in the metropolitan area. There have been no detections to date in the Gascoyne or Mid-West regions.
Mr Bowley said the department was conducting extensive surveillance and monitoring on commercial horticulture properties.
“In addition, community members in Carnarvon and Geraldton are hosting surveillance ‘sticky’ traps on their properties,” he said.
“Community involvement is vital in helping to support our local vegetable growers and we commend local residents who are supporting these surveillance activities.”
Mr Bowley reminded Mid-West and Gascoyne residents that if visiting Perth, they must not bring back with them ‘host’ vegetables or seedlings from the metropolitan area or surrounding regional shires, in particular home-grown plants and produce.
“More detail about established quarantine zones and movement restrictions for ‘host’ plants and produce such as potato, tomato, chilli, capsicum, eggplant and tamarillo is available at the department’s website,” he said.
“We also urge residents to be on the lookout for this pest, and report any suspect detections the department.”
Reports can be made using the MyPestGuide Reporter app or contact the department’s Pest and Disease Information Service on 1800 084 881 or email photos with your contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Detailed information on the tomato potato psyllid response and movement requirements is available here.
Media contacts: Jodie Thomson/Lisa Bertram, media liaison +61 (0)8 9368 3937/3325