Christmas is fast approaching, and our biosecurity officers are getting ready for an increase of passengers flying in and out of our airports.
While the holidays are a great time for all, our officers will be working hard to keep Australia safe from pests and diseases that can do harm to our agriculture industry and the Aussie lifestyle.
Recently, a traveller returning from the United States of America helped to keep our borders and industry safe by reporting a bug that was later identified as a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB).
Australian Chief Plant Protection Officer, Dr Gabrielle Vivian-Smith, said the BSMB poses a huge threat to our crops and ornamental plants feeding on various fruits.
“Following unpacking of all of their personal luggage, a single live BMSB was found in the spine of a children’s book that had been brought back with them,” Dr Vivian-Smith said.
“They immediately placed the insect in a zip-lock bag and reported it to the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.
“The single live BMSB was securely delivered to the Adelaide regional office.
“Given their awareness of BMSB and their fast response, the risk was assessed as low by the department.
“This identification has helped keep more than 300 Australian host plants and our industry safe – a great start to the holiday season.”
To help keep our country safe, follow biosecurity requirements when travelling or returning to Australia and keep an eye out for any possible biosecurity risks as you travel, and after you return from travel.
If you see something unusual or unexpected, secure it and report it to us immediately. You can:
- call our See. Secure. Report. hotline on 1800 798 636
- complete our online reporting form.