Guava Root Knot Nematode surveillance continues

NT Government

The NT Government has increased surveillance and assigned a full-time project manager to gain better intelligence on the Guava Root-Knot Nematode, detected in Darwin last month.

Plant biosecurity staff will ramp up community engagement this weekend as efforts to detect Guava Root-Knot Nematode in the Northern Territory step up.

Guava Root-Knot Nematode is pest which affects the crop yield of vegetables and causes severe knotting of a plant’s root system.

Guava Root-Knot Nematode, also known by its scientific name Meloidogyne enterolobii, was detected in the Darwin area last month, and has now been found on seven properties.

The pest has been detected in Malak, Rapid Creek, Anula and Leanyer in Darwin, Palmerston, Middle Point and on Croker Island.

DNA samples have been provided to the Queensland and Western Australian Governments to check historical samples to confirm this nematode is not present in other jurisdictions.

Plant biosecurity staff will attend the NT Native Eco-Fair and Plant Sale at Fred’s Pass on Sunday from 8.30am to 1.30pm to educate the public about the biosecurity pests which could be found in their backyard.

Formal engagement with growers will commence next week, which will include visiting growers, undertaking tracing, collect samples, providing advice for management and developing protocols for pest free place of production.

This year, Territory Government announced an immediate $2.9 million biosecurity boost, to prepare the Territory’s agribusiness industries to respond to increasing biosecurity threats which would have devastating consequences for our agricultural sector and regional economies.

This investment is in addition, to the Budget 2022 commitment of $1.9 million bringing the total biosecurity package to $4.8 million this financial year.

Guava Root-Knot Nematode spreads through the soil attached to machinery, tools, footwear, and plant products.

It causes severe knotting of a plant’s root system and can cause stunted growth, wilting and the yellowing of leaves.

To report a suspected case of Guava Root-Knot Nematode, call the exotic plant hotline on 1800 084 881 or email images to the Plant Biosecurity team at [email protected]

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