Mitey useful guide

Author: | Date: 29 Jun 2012

MITEY USEFUL GUIDE: The Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) has released a Back Pocket Guide to assist growers in correctly identifying crop mites. Cesar entomologist Dr Paul Umina, who collaborated with GRDC in developing the guide, says mites are small in size and often go unnoticed, but are an important pest group attacking Australian grain crops. “Some species have become more problematic over the last decade as farming practices have changed, and others are proving difficult to control due to tolerance and chemical resistance issues.”

Dr Umina said there were only a few mite species considered major crop pests in southern Australia. “These are the redlegged earth mite, blue oat mite, Bryobia mite and Balaustium mite. In addition there are also sporadic pests that occasionally cause crop damage in grains, such as the brown wheat mite and the two-spotted mite.”

All these mites are relatively similar in appearance and can co-exist in the same area, which means correct identification between species is essential in ensuring effective control of mite pests in crops and pastures. “This guide is designed to assist growers in identifying the most commonly observed mite species found in the southern and western cropping regions,” Dr Umina said.

The guide will be included in the July-August edition of GRDC’s Ground Cover magazine and is available for viewing and downloading via Free copies can also be ordered via GRDC’s Ground Cover Direct, free phone 1800 11 00 44 or email


GRDC Project Code: UM00033

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GRDC Project Code UM00033