The following are some of the high priority exotic pests of cherries, as identified in the development of the Industry Biosecurity Plan for the Cherry Industry. Additional information is included in the fact sheets.
Any of these pests would have serious consequences should they enter and become established in Australia. Implementing biosecurity measures to control endemic pests will go a long way towards preventing exotic pests from entering and becoming established on your farm.
For a complete list of exotic pest threats for cherries, contact Cherry Growers of Australia for a copy of the industry biosecurity plan.
Brown marmorated stink bug
As an adult, Halyomorpha halys is a 12-17 mm long mottled brown coloured stink bug, shaped like a shield
Very wide host range and affects many plants, including tree nuts such as hazelnut, pecan and potentially walnuts
Originally from eastern Asia, but recently introduced to North America and Europe where it is having a significant impact on agriculture and as a nuisance pest
Saliva causes significant damage to plant tissues
Eggs are cream to yellow-orange and approximately 1.6 mm long and laid in clusters on the underside of leaves
Five nymph stages that range from less than 3 mm to 12 mm long. The nymphs are orange and black when they first hatch but quickly develop a similar colouration to the adults
The adults and larvae can be confused with a number of other brown coloured stinkbugs that are present in Australia
Hitchhikes in container shipments of a range of commodities, including plant material. Adults are capable of flight allowing localised spread of the pest
Symptoms on cherry leaves. Photo by Donato Boscia, CNR - Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection, UOS, Bari (IT),
Pierce’s disease (cherry leaf scorch)
Caused by a bacterium (Xylella fastidiosa) that lives in the water conducting system (xylem) of plants
Plants show symptoms of water stress, such as leaf scorch, and the plant progressively weakens and dies
Can be transmitted in infected propagation material and by leafhoppers such as the exotic glassy-winged sharpshooter
Present in North America, Central America and some regions of South America
The diseases caused by Xylella fastidiosa go by a range of names depending on the host species, including: Pierce’s disease, almond leaf scorch, bacterial leaf scorch, citrus variagated chlorosis, olive quick decline and olive leaf scorch.
Look for anything unusual in your orchard and storage facilities. If a pest is found that is not normally present on your property, it may be new not only to your property, but to the region, state or even Australia.