Community urged to be vigilant for signs of blueberry rust

​Biosecurity Tasmania is currently investigating a detection of blueberry rust (BBR) on a small commercial blueberry farm in the north of the State.

Biosecurity Tasmania officers are currently conducting further surveys on the property and a Direction notice has been issued to restrict the movement of fruit and plant material, equipment, staff and visitors.  Biosecurity Tasmania has also commenced the necessary tracing investigations.

This detection is an important reminder of the importance of ongoing blueberry rust vigilance.

Have you noticed any suspect looking blueberries you have picked or purchased?  Have you checked your blueberry plants at home for signs of blueberry rust?

Look for signs of brown-rust coloured lesions on the top and yellow-orange pustules on bottom sides of leaves.   Yellow-orange pustules may also appear on the mature fruit.

If you think you may have blueberry rust, please call Biosecurity Tasmania immediately on 03 6165 3777.

Suspect looking fruit should be secured in a zip lock bag, and placed in the refrigerator before calling Biosecurity Tasmania to report the find.

If you do suspect blueberry rust in your plants at home, please do not disturb or move the plants – Biosecurity Tasmania officers will come to you. Care should also be taken to ensure that any clothes or equipment do not become contaminated.

Throughout the berry season all Tasmanians are encouraged to remain vigilant for any signs of plant pests and diseases.

Good biosecurity is a shared responsibility and we all have an important role to play in helping to protect our industries, environment and way-of-life from the impacts of pests, weeds and diseases.

Further information about blueberry rust, including signs and symptoms, is available on the Biosecurity Tasmania website.

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