Diseases

Diseases have a detrimental effect on plants and animals and impact on market access and agricultural production. Diseases include micro-organisms, disease agents (bacteria, fungi and viruses), infectious agents, parasites and genetic disorders.

Western Australia is free from some of the world's major agricultural and livestock diseases. Biosecurity measures on your property are vital in preventing the spread of diseases.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development provides:

  • biosecurity/quarantine measures at the WA 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 search our website, the Western Australian Organism List or contact our Pest and Disease Information Service (PaDIS).

For diagnostic services, please contact our Diagnostic Laboratory Services.

Articles

  • Polyphagous shot-hole borer (PSHB) Euwallacea fornicatus is a beetle native to Southeast Asia. The beetle attacks a wide range of plants by tunnelling into trunks, stems and branches.

  • Banana freckle was detected in Dwarf Cavendish banana fruit in the Northern Territory in May 2022. The Northern Territory Government is responding to this new detection.

  • The Animal Biosecurity and Welfare program within the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) manages evidence-based systems to maintain and verify our high animal health,

  • Papaya sticky disease is absent from Western Australia. It has recently been reported from the Northern Territory, after being detected in Queensland in 2014.

  • The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development conducts a surveillance program for ewe abortion and newborn lamb deaths to assist sheep producers to identify the cause of abortions a

  • Western Australia's access to livestock and livestock product export markets, worth about $2 billion annually, relies on Australia being free of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD).

  • Ehrlichiosis is a disease of dogs that occurs when a brown dog tick infected with the bacteria, Ehrlichia canis, bites a dog. Dogs do not directly transmit the disease to each other.

  • Hendra virus is an emergency animal disease transmitted to horses by flying foxes (fruit bats).

  • Bluetongue virus can infect all ruminants but it usually only causes serious disease in sheep. Cattle may be infected with the virus but rarely show disease.

  • Identification of livestock is required by law under the Biosecurity and Agriculture Management (Identification and Movement of Stock and Apiaries) Regulations 2013 [BAM (IMSA) Regulations].

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