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Growers get insight into latest bug control

Entomologist Dr Melina Miles says the GRDC research updates provide an important opportunity for growers and advisors to hear the latest management tactics for current and emerging pest issues, like Rutherglen bugs. Source: GRDC

Growers around New South Wales and Queensland wanting to be on the front foot against tiny green profit suckers will be able to hear from one of Australia’s leading entomologists at the upcoming Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Research Updates.

Senior entomologist with the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) in Queensland, Dr Melina Miles will look into local and national threats, with topics including an update on Russian wheat aphid, aphid thresholds in canola, Rutherglen bug damage and management and helicoverpa insecticide resistance management.

She said building growers and advisers’ knowledge was the key to effective management of pests and the GRDC Research Updates provided a vital platform for that information exchange.

“The Updates are also an excellent way to hear what is happening in the paddock and get some hands-on feedback on control measures being used on-farm, as they provide an opportunity for me to share timely information about new pest issues,” Dr Miles said.

“A good example of this is the Russian Wheat Aphid (RWA), which is considered a high priority pest by the grains industry because of its potential to cause significant yield losses in wheat and barley if not well managed.

“While RWA hasn’t been identified further north than Rankin Springs yet, it is inevitable that it will spread further into our northern cropping regions, but we don’t know when so it is important growers understand how to identify it immediately.

“Similarly for helicoverpa or corn earworm, which was a large issue last Spring (2016) due to late winter cereal crops, we found that early detection was key as it provided the opportunity to use NPV, which is effective on small larvae, but less effective on medium larvae.

“Growers also need to be able to distinguish between armyworm and helicoverpa as NPV is not effective on armyworm.”

Dr Melina Miles presentations will be tailored to address local pest issues at a series of regional GRDC Updates at the following locations:

  • Westmar, QLD Tuesday 18 July 2017
  • Jondaryan, QLD Wednesday 19 July 2017
  • Narromine, NSW Tuesday 25 July 2017
  • Rowena, NSW Wednesday 26 July 2017
  • Pallamallawa, NSW Thursday 27 July 2017

For a full Updates program or to register go to or contact John Cameron or Erica McKay on 02 9482 4930 or e-mail

Source: GRDC

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