Grain growers are advised to monitor grain storage over the coming weeks as increasing temperatures are likely to stimulate stored grain insect pest activity.
Grain remaining on-farm from the previous harvest is a common breeding ground for pests, so growers are encouraged to regularly monitor stored grain and clean up any grain residues.
The Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Grain Storage Extension Project manager, Chris Warrick said early detection of pests allowed them to be identified, treated and removed before they became a much larger problem.
“Grain residues in storages or older grain stocks held over from last season provide ideal breeding sites for pests,” Mr Warrick said.
Effective grain hygiene requires complete removal of all waste grain from storages and equipment.
Mr Warrick said pests only needed a small amount of grain for survival, and those surviving populations could quickly multiply and spread when conditions started to warm up.
“One bag of infested grain can produce more than one million insects in a year, and these can easily move to other storages where they will start new infestations.”
“Regular inspection of storages and equipment where grain is present is important – if any pest infestations are detected, they can be controlled before pests spread.”
Pests can be found in empty silos and grain storages, aeration ducts, augers and conveyers, harvesters, field bins and chaser bins, left-over bags of grain, trucks, spilt grain around grain storages, seed grain and stockfeed grain.
Practical information on grain storage, pest identification and treatment is available via the GRDC’s stored grain information hub at www.storedgrain.com.au.
Growers can also contact their regional grain storage expert, by calling 1800 WEEVIL (1800 933 845).
Mr Warrick is now the designated specialist for Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and southern New South Wales. He can be contacted via the national hotline or email firstname.lastname@example.org.