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Protecting your farm

Farm biosecurity practices help protect your farm from the risks associated with emergency plant pests entering or establishing on your property. An emergency plant pest is any plant disease or insect pest that is not currently in Queensland.

Under the Biosecurity Act 2014 you have a general biosecurity obligation to manage biosecurity risks on your farm. Assessing biosecurity risks and planning to control them can improve your business's profitability and contribute to your local community's economic health.

If you notice an unusual new pest or disease in plants on your farm, report it immediately to Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23 or the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on 1800 084 881.

Major biosecurity risks

Farm visitors

Visitors can bring pests and diseases onto your farm. Visitors include friends, relatives, neighbours, contractors, itinerant workers, agents, salespeople, advisers, shooters, fishers, agronomists, pest scouts and veterinarians.

To reduce biosecurity risks from farm visitors:

  • place a sign at the front gate advising visitors to report to your house or office rather than driving over the farm looking for you
  • ask your visitors questions about where they have been recently so you can assess any risks
  • drive visitors around the farm in your farm vehicle
  • keep a record of the names and dates of every visitor to your farm
  • provide protective clothing, footwear and disinfectant for visitors inspecting your plants or animals.

Plant biosecurity

Familiarise yourself and farm workers with the most important biosecurity threats to your crops. Farm biosecurity manuals and industry biosecurity plans provide information on pest, disease and weed threats to different crops and industries.

Use clean planting material

Ensure all planting material and other farm inputs are pest, disease and weed free. Always use planting material or seeds that have been tested and certified as pest and disease free.

Be aware of the common pests and diseases that occur on your crops. Checking your plants frequently will help you or your farm staff notice any new or unusual pests, diseases or weeds.

Keep vehicles and machinery clean

Prevent the entry and movement of pests, diseases and weeds on your farm by keeping your machinery, equipment and vehicles clean.

Clean your farm equipment regularly throughout the year to prevent any carryover of pests and diseases between seasons.

Water and food

Water and food can also bring pests and diseases onto the farm. To reduce risks:

  • assess water sources for diseases, chemicals or algal bloom
  • assess feedstuffs for contamination from weeds, seeds and chemical residues
  • know where hay, straw and grain is coming from, and obtain a vendor declaration.

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