Pesticide resistant redlegged earth mite found

Redlegged earth mites with insecticide resistance have been discovered in the Grains Research and Development Corporation southern cropping region.

Studies in South Australia confirmed resistance to synthetic pyrethroids and organophosphates.

Entomologist Dr Paul Umina, from cesar and The University of Melbourne, said the redlegged earth mite was a threat to crops and pastures, such as canola, lupins and legume seedlings.

“Mite feeding can lead to distortion or shrivelling of leaves and affected seedlings may die at emergence when mite populations are high,” Dr Umina said.

Infestations are commonly controlled using seed treatments, or synthetic insecticides, so growers should reconsider strategies for this pest, he said.