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Marchalina hellenica in Victoria

Publication Date
Mon, 13 Jul 2015, 01:57
Last Updated
June 6, 2017, 6:11 a.m.
Report Number
Pest Id
Marchalina hellenica - (MARCHE)
Report Status
The affected host species reported are restricted to the family Pinaceae with records available for the following species and genera: • Pines: Pinus brutia, Pinus halepensis, Pinus kochiana Klotzsch ex K. Koch, Pinus laricio tauricus, Pinus nigra salzmannii J.F.Arnold, Pinus pinea, Pinus sosnowskyi, Pinus sylvestris. • Firs: Abies cephalonica, Abies nordmenniana, • Spruces: Picea engelmanni , Picea orientalis,
Pest Status (old values from ISPM 8 -1998 )
  • Present: but managed
  • Present: only in some areas
Pest Status (ISPM 8 - 2021)
  • Present: not widely distributed and under official control
Geographical Distribution
The south east suburbs of Melbourne.

Marchalina hellenica is a sap-feeding insect. It produces large amounts of honeydew on which sooty moulds develop. Marchalina hellenica can infest a range of different pine species, but has only been detected on Pinus radiata, Pinus pinea and Pinus halepensis. It prefers bark crevices and moves around the tree according to the life stage. Infestations are observed on trunks, branches and exposed roots, with egg laying common on branches where smaller nymphs have access to sap. It is covered by abundant white waxy secretions. Large populations cause branch dieback, gradual desiccation, eventually followed by tree death. In Australia, Marchalina hellenica has been causing defoliation of the 2nd, 3rd and 4th year needles on each tree and appears to be a factor in the death of one Pinus radiata tree.

This is the first report of Marchalina hellenica in Australia. Preliminary evidence indicates that the pest is restricted in its distribution.

Marchalina hellenica was found in metropolitan Adelaide (very limited distribution) and metropolitan Melbourne (wide distribution). The pest could potentially have a large impact on social amenity trees and the Australian softwood plantation industry. The eradication response included surveillance activities, using stem injections (Victoria) and destruction of trees (South Australia) found to be infested with Marchalina hellenica. After destruction of all trees infested with the pest, the pest has not been found in SA since November 2016 and South Australia has ongoing surveillance for the pest. However, stem injections in Victoria were not effective, so Marchalina hellenica is considered no longer technically feasible to eradicate from Victoria. A transition to management phase for the pest in Australia is in effect, which will establish sustainable ongoing management arrangements aimed to mitigate the impact of the pest on urban communities and soft wood plantation industries. The status of the pest is now Present: only in some areas (Victoria); but managed.
Contact for info
Australian Chief Plant Protection Officer Australian Government Department of Agriculture GPO Box 858 Canberra ACT 2601 [email protected]
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