There have been multiple detections of American serpentine leafminer (Liriomyza trifolii) across Australia’s north, including in the Northern Territory, Queensland, and Western Australia.

American serpentine leafminer poses a serious threat to Australia’s horticulture, nursery production, and agricultural plant industries.

Severe infestations of American serpentine leafminer may result in premature leaf drop, poor growth, and reduced crop yields. Australia considers it a National Priority Plant Pest.

Leafminers are small flies whose larvae feed internally on plants.

The Consultative Committee on Emergency Plant Pests has also agreed that American serpentine leafminer is considered an emergency plant pest under the Emergency Plant Pest Deed.

It has also agreed that American serpentine leafminer is not technically feasible to eradicate.

The Committee also highlighted the need for government and industry to work closely together on education campaigns for growers on how to manage the pest and actions they can implement that will help contain it to its current distribution.

There are no current interstate trade restrictions on the movement of plant material for this pest.

Further information including photos of American serpentine leafminer, is available on the Outbreak website.

If you suspect an American serpentine leafminer infestation, report it by phoning the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on 1800 084 881.