Don’t add storage pests to your drought challenges

Agriculture Victoria is reminding Millewa farmers of the importance of biosecurity vigilance over the summer harvest period.

Agriculture Victoria Biosecurity Officer Jim Moran said that while managing the farm during drought is particularly challenging, farmers are reminded not to forget their biosecurity.

Mr Moran said one local example is the Sentinel Silo Project which was established as a surveillance trapping program and designed to actively monitor for the presence of pests in grain silos.

“The project is designed to act as an early warning system if an exotic pest was to reach our shores.

“It also provides assurances to our export markets that we don’t have the pest and that grain biosecurity is a priority for Victoria,” he said.

Mr Moran said an exotic grain storage pest being monitored as part of the project is the Khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium), which has been identified as one of the top ten priority pests for Victorian plant industries.

“Khapra beetles feed on dried plant and animal products with a preference for grain and stored products.”

Mr Moran said under the Sentinel Silo Project three small pheromone traps are placed on the outside of silos to attract Khapra beetle if it is present.

Agriculture Victoria is keen to hear from any growers who are interested in participating in the project.

Any farmers wishing to have the traps placed at their silos can contact Mr Moran on (03) 5430 4479.

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