Last edition for 2021

How quickly has this year passed? It seems to have flown by. Being based in Queensland, we have not had as many seasons of lockdown and express our sympathies to those who have been caught in them, unable to get out and about as freely as they would like. No doubt those lock downs have made the year drag for them.

This is our last Infopest news for 2021. It contains information on APVMA anticoagulant rodenticides review; herbicide mode of action realignment; two new actives being considered as an acaricide and insecticide; the mango shoot looper detection and more.

With the festive season looming, the Infopest team would like to take the opportunity to wish readers and subscribers health and prosperity for the coming year, along with the freedom from lockdown to travel and visit with loved ones as desired. See you all again in 2022.

APVMA announce reconsideration of anticoagulant rodenticide approvals and registrations

First and second-generation anticoagulant rodenticide products are being reconsidered in their approvals and registration because of concern about potential for unacceptable risks in the areas of environmental safety, human health, and residues.

There is opportunity to have your say and make a submission to the APVMA on the matters being reconsidered and the reasons for the reconsideration.

The closing date for submissions is 2 February 2022. See the Agvet chemicals Gazette No. 22, 2 November 2021 for further information, Page 24.

Ag-Chem Update for September 2021 available

Hort Innovation project, MT20007 – Regulatory Support & Response Co-ordination’s project leader, Kevin Bodnaruk has released an update for September which can be found here.

Herbicide MoA alignment

In July 2020 Crop Life announced that herbicide mode of action (MoA) classifications have been updated internationally to capture new active constituents and ensure the MoA classification is globally relevant. Australia was using an alphabetical code which is being changed over to a numerical code to align with the international classification system.

Infopest has traditionally taken the details of the MoA from the product label approved by the APVMA. However, the MoA is not a relevant label particular, meaning that it can be changed by the registrant without the need for APVMA approval, thus there may be a period of adjustment where there is a mix of labels showing either classification system.

The numerical classification system should be fully implemented by the end of 2024.

A mobile app compatible with Android and Apple systems is available via the HRAC website ( at no cost to users. It will cross reference the herbicide active ingredient with its former MoA letter and new MoA number. Printed materials will also be made available to enable cross referencing of the changes. For more information, see the Crop Life media release.

APVMA reviewing Agricultural Labelling Code

The APVMA is inviting feedback from interested stakeholders on how to improve the Agricultural Labelling Code (ALC) and its useability.

The objectives of the review, which will be conducted by the APVMA’s Pesticides Team, are to ensure the ALC is:

  • consistent in all matters of advice across all sections of the ALC
  • administered consistently across the APVMA
  • provided in a clear and concise format on APVMA’s website
  • easy to use, navigate and find information.

The scope of the review does not include any amendment that would require legislative change. The deadline for comment is COB 8 December 2021. Submissions require an invitation to submit suggestions template which can be found here. For more information about the ALC click here.

APVMA considering two new active constituent requests for approval – cyflumetofen and isocyloseram

Cyflumetofen is a novel acaricide developed by Otsuka AgriTechno Co., Ltd. It affects only spider mites and has no effect on insects, crustaceans or vertebrates under conditions of practical use. The mode of action of cyflumetofen, its selectivity for mites and its safety for insects and vertebrates were investigated. ( )

Isocycloseram is a new isoxazoline insecticide that can efficiently control the diamondback moth in cruciferous crops. ( ) it was discovered by Syngenta Crop Protection.

Both actives are currently before the APVMA for approval. For more information visit the Agvet chemicals Gazette No. 20, 5 October 2021, page14 and 16 respectively.

Beware of label changes

The APVMA publishes variations to labels in their fortnightly Gazette. Keeping abreast of all the changes that occur to labels is challenging. For example, herbicides have come under review with respect to changing modes of action as discussed in this publication, and also in terms of buffer zones and spray drift prevention. The assessments are taking place in increments and may not always be apparent to users.

One such example is Titan Atrazine 600 SC herbicide (91025_130773) noted in Gazette No. 22, 2 November 2021.

It was noted that changes were made to precaution and mixing “DO NOT” statements / restrictions. The previous restriction referring to use around streams stated:

DO NOT mix, load or apply within 20m of any well, sink hole or intermittent stream or river.

DO NOT apply this product within 60m of natural or impounded lakes or dams.

 The new changes approved read:

DO NOT mix, load or apply this product within 20m of any well, sink hole, intermittent or perennial stream.

Plus, A new “Mandatory Downwind Buffer Zones” table to “Natural Aquatic Areas” and, there are no direct references to dams on the label.

Infopest has always advocated that everyone should read the label first. Changes of this nature demonstrate why this is important. Resellers may tell purchasers of atrazine that products of the same active and concentration are the same in their uses, however this may not be the case. The Titan product has recently been approved. Other 600 SC Atrazine products with older APVMA approval numbers still have reference to dams and the wording for perennial streams is intermittent in use amongst them and do not have the buffer zone table. These changes are subtle but important to the protection of water bodies and natural aquatic areas as listed and they will become more prevalent as the APVMA reviews more labels for this purpose.

Infopest encourages readers to be alert to changes in labels. If offered a substitute product to one you are currently using and familiar with, take the time to thoroughly read the label and note any of these subtle differences.

Mango shoot looper found in North Queensland

Flying pests are notoriously difficult to contain, this is why an incursion of an exotic plant pest that is a strong flier is of great concern to industries affected. Mango shoot looper (MSL) (Perixera cf. illepidaria) is one such pest, feeding on the shoots, flowers and immature fruit of mangoes and lychees although rambutan, longan, cashew and pistachio should also be considered potential hosts. A pest with origins in Asia, MSL has recently been detected in Mareeba, Mutchilba and Biboohra.

It is interesting to speculate on the pathway of entry for this pest. Comparisons to another strong flying pest, Fall Armyworm (FAW), show that FAW found its path around the globe rather quickly and most likely island hopped into Australia via the Torres Straits. Unlike FAW, mango shoot looper’s distribution seemed contained to parts of Asia including Hong Kong, Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, India, the North-eastern Himalayan region and Guam. Asia is near, but as the pest flies, perhaps not that near. Given that MSL is more limited in its host plants, the containment to areas of tropical fruit production seems logical. Biosecurity Queensland at DAF is currently undertaking surveillance activities to determine the extent of its distribution and to inform response strategies and advice for industry. Anecdotal reports from growers indicate the pest is not a recent arrival and that it may have been present for some years.

Adult mango shoot loopers can fly and spread naturally in localised areas from tree to tree. Their spread may be enhanced by strong winds. Mango shoot loopers may also be spread by human-assisted movement of infested plant material. Mangoes are an important crop in Queensland with our state producing 67% of the nation’s crop. Severe infestations may cause 80-100% leaf and flower damage and the larval stage of the moth has already been observed on mangoes stripping back flowers and damaging young fruit. Despite the damage to forming fruit at the flowering stage, MSL does not affect the quality of mature fruit in mango or lychee and DAF advises that there are no fruit supply issues anticipated for either the domestic or international markets. As the pest is a strong flier and there is high host availability in the affected area individual property quarantines are not likely to be part of DAF’s response strategy. The Consultative Committee on Emergency Plant Pests (the Committee) has determined it is not technically feasible to eradicate the exotic pest. It is unlikely there will be any domestic or international market access implications associated with this pest incursion.

The need for vigilance and reporting unusual sightings of pests is always important. In the case of flying pests, containment may not be possible but early detection and reporting of them gives the industry an advantage of being able to prepare their management response before the pest spreads too widely.