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Spodoptera frugiperda (fall armyworm) detections Australia

Publication Date
Wed, 05 May 2021, 06:27
Last Updated
May 5, 2021, 6:27 a.m.
Report Number
Pest Id
Spodoptera frugiperda - (LAPHFR)
Report Status
Lepidopteran pest with a wide host range feeding on more than 350 plant species including commercial species such as; Zea mays (maize), Oryza sativa (rice), Sorghum bicolor (sorghum), Saccharum officinarum (sugarcane), Triticum aestivum (wheat), horticultural crops, Gossypium hirsutum L (cotton) and other plants. The extent of host range in Australia is not yet well known.
Pest Status (old values from ISPM 8 -1998 )
  • Present: in all parts of the area
Pest Status (ISPM 8 - 2021)
  • Present: widely distributed
Geographical Distribution
Torres Strait, Queensland, Northern Territory, Western Australia, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and Norfolk Island. The pest is capable of natural dispersal over long distances and has a broad, available host range. Further detections are likely. However, as a tropical and subtropical pest, it is not yet known if the pest will persist in the cooler southern states over winter.

Eradication of Spodoptera frugiperda from Australia is not considered technically feasible after being reported in Torres Strait (late January 2020), Queensland (February 2020), Northern Territory and Western Australia (March 2020), New South Wales (October 2020), Victoria (December 2020), and Norfolk Island and Tasmania (March 2021). Activities for fall armyworm have transitioned to management and are focused on limiting the impact of the pest.

All levels of Government and Industry are working together to ensure appropriate management options are available to growers and identify research priorities.

These detections are being notified due to recent international interest in the movement of the pest.
Contact for info
Australian Chief Plant Protection Officer Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment GPO Box 858 Canberra ACT 2601 [email protected]
Report files
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