Member for Tweed Geoff Provest has urged farmers in Tweed to be on the lookout for signs of damage and the presence of fall armyworm larvae in summer crops following the recent trapping of moths in various locations across northern NSW including Tumbulgum.

Mr Provest said the moths had been trapped at locations across northern NSW this month. 

“Fall armyworm is an insect pest that poses a serious threat to a range of crops,” Mr Provest said.

“While it has been found in a small number of locations, it is anticipated that migratory flights of the pest will occur annually across NSW and fall armyworm may establish in some of the warmer parts of the State.

“The detected moths were trapped during routine surveillance of the early warning trapping network established by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and Local Land Services (LLS).

“Farmers in the Tweed region need to be on the lookout for signs of fall armyworm, which include windowing of leaves where larvae have hatched and small shot holes as leaves expand, caused by larvae feeding in the developing leaf whorl.

“The best way to minimise the spread and impact of the pest is to identify the signs and symptoms early.”

Fast action to manage small larvae is recommended by NSW DPI and Local Land Services (LLS) to maximise control and help minimise further spread by restricting local infestations.

Anyone who suspects the presence of fall armyworm should immediately call the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on 1800 084 881.

For small larvae, the Department of Primary Industries and Local Land Services recommend retaining samples with food, such as host crop leaves, and allow them to grow to enable photographs to be taken.

In most cases, NSW DPI will be able identify larvae from clear photographs which can be sent via an online form or to with your contact details.

DPI continues to work with potentially affected industries providing free insect diagnostics for suspect fall armyworm moths and larvae, advice on control and chemical management options.

More information on identification, treatment options and resistance management is available on DPI and LLS websites. Farmers should contact their LLS staff for advice on fall armyworm management.