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Myrtle Rust

Information and identification sheet on the fungus Uredo rangelii (Myrtle rust) This fungus has been detected on a property in New South Wales and any suspect cases of Myrtle Rust should be reported to the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on 1800 084 881.


Fact Sheet

Identification Sheet


Myrtle Rust in Queensland

Current situation

Natural infections of myrtle rust continue to be restricted to South East Queensland. However, infections were recently confirmed in private gardens in Hervey Bay and in the Bundaberg Botanic Gardens. These are the most northerly detections of myrtle rust to date outside a plant nursery and are evidence that the disease is now established in the Fraser Coast and Bundaberg regions.

The establishment of the disease in the Hervey Bay area considerably heightens the risk to Fraser Island from myrtle rust. Fraser Island’s unique rainforest and plant communities are dominated by myrtaceous species and the disease now represents a very real threat to this highly valued World Heritage Area.

Myrtle rust was also recently identified in nursery stock in retail nurseries in Cairns, Chinchilla and Airlie Beach. All plants in the infected lines have been removed from sale and treated or destroyed. Biosecurity Queensland has advised the business owners of their legal obligations in regard to the sale of myrtle rust infected plants in Queensland and provided information on the prevention and management of the disease in nursery situations. The wholesale nursery businesses that supplied the plants will be provided similar information.

Since the last e-newsletter (17 October 2011) myrtle rust has been identified at 143 new sites and confirmed in three new local government areas (see list below).

The high number of public reports received of suspect myrtle rust infections continue with 189 reports received in September, 106 in October and a further 118 received so far in November. This brings the total number of public reports received since the disease was first detected in Queensland in December last year to 2,311. The number of public reports is expected to remain high during the spring and summer months with increased temperatures and humidity conducive to disease development and spread

The Myrtle Rust Program is continuing to encourage public reporting of suspect myrtle rust cases so the spread of the disease can be tracked and the impact of the disease on different species and in different environments can be monitored.

Below is an overview of the current situation in Queensland (as at 18 November 2011):

Total number of known myrtle rust cases in Queensland | 828

Total number of known affected (host) species in Queensland | 101

Total number of Council areas with myrtle rust cases | 17

Names of Council areas with myrtle rust cases Brisbane City

  • Bundaberg Regional*
  • Cairns Regional
  • Fraser Coast Regional
  • Gold Coast City
  • Gympie Regional
  • Ipswich City
  • Logan City
  • Moreton Bay Regional
  • Redland City
  • Scenic Rim Regional
  • South Burnett Regional
  • Sunshine Coast Regional
  • Toowoomba Regional
  • Townsville City
  • Western Downs Regional*
  • Whitsunday Regional*


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