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Phylloxera Stop the Spread!

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Phylloxera Awareness Campaign

A Phylloxera awareness campaign has been developed which will be headed by this very targeted message

Phylloxera – Stop the Spread!
Be Aware. Be Active. Be Vigilant.

This campaign is the culmination of 18 month’s collaborative work between Wine Yarra Valley and Agriculture Victorian. The campaign aims to bring into sharp focus the impacts and costs of phylloxera infestation on businesses and to provide growers with a best practice approach to on-farm bio-security measures.

The campaign includes a pocket guide available online and in hard copy, several short films demonstrating best practices, signage for vineyards and links to other important information. The information has also been translated into Hindi, Khmer and Vietnamese to target the seasonal workers.

Phylloxera in the Yarra Valley

The first Yarra Valley phylloxera detection was in 2006 and since then 28 vineyards (approximately 735 hectares) in the region have detected a phylloxera infestation. The rate of detection has increased considerably over the past two years, in 2015 there were eight detections and so far in 2016 there have been seven detections with the active period still ahead of us. It is anticipated that the infested hectares will double by 2018.

The economic impact is considerable as growers must decide to either replant on rootstock or remove the vineyard and transition to some other land use. It has been estimated that replanting will cost between $27,000 per hectare if trellises remain and $55,000 per hectare if the vineyard is totally removed. The total cost facing growers is already in the tens of millions of dollars and this does not include the loss of production.

What is phylloxera

Phylloxera is a tiny yellow insect that destroys grapevines by damaging their roots. Secondary infection can also occur as the roots are injured. As the roots die, so does the vine.

Adult phylloxera are approximately 1mm long and yellow-brown in colour. The adults are all female and are able to reproduce asexually. One adult female is capable of laying up to 200 eggs per cycle and can have several cycles in its lifetime. This means that only one insect is needed to infest a vineyard.

For more details on Phylloxera and the awareness campaign follow this link

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