Viruses & virus-like

There are many types of viruses, viroids, prions and syndromes that have the potential to affect animal and plant health in Western Australia. Viruses pose a serious risk for primary producers, as they can impact on market access and agricultural production.

Western Australia is free from some of the world's major agricultural and livestock diseases. Good biosecurity measures on your property are vital for preventing the spread of animal and plant diseases. Viruses can be spread by insect vectors. There are no pesticides that can be used to kill viruses, however they can be reduced and controlled by controlling these insect vectors with pesticides.

The Department of Agriculture and Food Western Australia provides:

  • biosecurity/quarantine measures at the State border to prevent the entry of plant and animal diseases. 
  • post border biosecurity measures for harmful animal and plant diseases. 
  • advice on widespread diseases present in the State.

For advice on animal and plant diseases please search our website, Western Australian Organism List or contact our Pest and Disease Information Service (PaDIS).

For diagnostic services, please contact our AGWEST Plant Laboratories or Animal Health Laboratories.


  • 24 November 2015

    Barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) and cereal yellow dwarf virus (CYDV) are found damaging cereal crops worldwide. They infect wheat, barley, oats and grasses and are transmitted by aphids.

  • 24 February 2016

    Bean yellow mosaic virus (BYMV) causes a serious disease in narrow-leafed lupins. BYMV is found predominantly in high rainfall wheatbelt zones but occurs less often in medium rainfall zones.

  • 22 July 2016

    DDLS - Plant pathology (formerly part of AGWEST Plant Laboratories) is a service area under the DAFWA Diagnostic Laboratory Services (DDLS) - an amalgamation of DAFWA plant and animal laboratory an

  • 24 February 2016

    Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) is a seed- and aphid-borne virus that infects narrow-leafed lupins. It can also infect many other broad-leafed plant species.

  • Leaves turn yellow from the tips and may have yellow stripes extending towards base.
    10 July 2015

    A cereal disease caused by two similar viruses (barley yellow dwarf virus and cereal yellow dwarf virus). These diseases are spread by several colonising aphid species.

  • Plants infected as seedlings are spindly with multiple tillers
    20 May 2015

    Wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV) is a seed and mite-borne virus that infects cereals (including wheat and barley) and grasses.

  • 24 February 2016

    Wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV) is a seed and mite-borne virus that infects wheat causing severe leaf symptoms and reduced yields.

  • 21 March 2016

    Potato virus Y (PVY) is an aphid-borne virus that causes yield losses and tuber quality defects in commercial potato crops.

  • 20 October 2016

    Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) is an aphid-borne virus that infects a wide range of plant species including vegetable crops and weeds.  In Western Australia CMV infection in capsicum causes yield and

  • 4 March 2016

    Little cherry disease [Ampelovirus Little cherry virus 2 (LChV-2)] is a serious pest of cherries that can affect fruit development and quality.

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