The Research, Development and Extension program for control, eradication and preparedness for vegetable leafminer (MT16004) was developed in recognition of the extensive impact that vegetable leafminer (VLM; Liriomyza sativae) could have on the vegetable and nursery industries if it were to move into production areas with no management plan in place.

VLM was detected on multiple islands across the Torres Strait between 2008 and 2015. VLM was then detected on the most northerly point of the Australian mainland, Cape York Peninsula (CYP), in 2015.

Throughout the lifetime of the project, MT16004 project partners will investigate biological and chemical control options, identify VLM spread pathways into Australia, develop management guidelines and trapping methods, model the spread of the pest from CYP and develop a continency plan and response plans in the event of a regional eradication.

Project partners have since identified Liriomyza huidobrensis, commonly known as the serpentine leafminer, as a pest that requires immediate further research and development of preparedness in case it establishes in Australia. The serpentine leafminer is a serious pest of arable crops, vegetables and ornamental crops grown in glasshouses and in the field.

Project partners have recently published an article highlighting the serpentine leafminer’s biology, worldwide distribution, effect on potato industries worldwide, chemical and biological control, and risk of spread and establishment. To find out more about the serpentine leafminer, read the article on page 28 of the February/March 2019 edition of Potatoes Australia.

For more information on the VLM project, click here.

This post appeared in the AUSVEG Weekly Update published 26 February 2019. Subscribe to the Update using our online form to receive the latest industry news in your inbox every week!

The strategic levy investment project RD&E program for control, eradication and preparedness for vegetable leafminer (MT16004) is a part of the Hort Innovation Vegetable and Nursery Funds. This project has been funded by Hort Innovation using the vegetable and nursery research and development levies and contributions from the Australian Government. Hort Innovation is the grower-owned, not-for-profit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.