Be a Biosecurity Warrior

Our environment is precious and unique

Biosecurity in NSW focuses on ensuring the supply of healthy safe food, recreational access to our state's natural resources and minimising the risk to native flora and fauna.

NSW DPI works with other government agencies, industry and the community to protect against biosecurity threats and the negative impacts of animal and plant pests, diseases and weeds.

We all have a role to play in minimising biosecurity threats.

We need your help

Australia is free of many of the pests, weeds and diseases found in other parts of the world. We need your help to keep it that way - here's how you can be a Biosecurity Warrior and help to keep Australia clean, green and healthy.

See it

Regularly inspect your home and garden for anything that looks unusual. Keep a lookout for pests or weeds or anything that might be a risk.

Snap it

Take a photo to help DPI officers with identification.

Report it

If you see something unusual or suspect an illegal activity report it to the Biosecurity Hotline on 1800 680 244 or via our online report form.

Remember - biosecurity is a shared responsibility which starts at home.

Real life Biosecurity Warriors

Meet Milo Yeigh, the 19 year old man who spotted a strange ant in Lismore and reported it to NSW DPI.

Milo is a self confessed ant enthusiast who discovered the yellow crazy ant infestation in Lismore central business district in May 2018.

Milo, was killing time at the Quad when he spotted the invasive ants and decided to ring the Biosecurity Hotline.

Following Milo's report, NSW DPI and Local Land Services (LLS) immediately began undertaking surveillance work and developing a control strategy to minimise the spread of these ants.

Lismore Thomas MP George, NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI), Local Land Services (LLS), Lismore City Council, Rous County Council, National Parks and Landcare representatives gathered in Lismore on Friday, 22 June 2018 to acknowledge Milo's efforts and the community response.

This was a great opportunity to be able to recognise Milo who essentially kicked off this all agency response, simply by being aware to his surroundings and caring enough to report it.

The yellow crazy ant is considered one of the top 100 examples of the world’s worst invasive species, with the potential to do serious damage to the local environment and agricultural production.

Because of Milo's quick action, he has helped to stop the spread of a serious invasive pest and biosecurity threat to NSW and is protecting our environment from yellow crazy ant.

Milo Yeigh

A Western Sydney warehouse manager has played a crucial role in the eradication of a harmful exotic pest and was recognised for his part in protecting NSW’s $1 billion horticulture industry.

In 2017, Hager Electro’s John Matakaiongo detected the invasive brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) in a shipment of imported electrical equipment from Italy.

He immediately reported his find, prompting a 12 month eradication and monitoring campaign led by Greater Sydney Local Land Services in partnership with NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI).

In August 2018, NSW was officially declared BMSB free and Mr Matakaiongo was recognised for his contribution.

NSW DPI Deputy Director General Biosecurity and Food Safety, Bruce Christie, said the pest could not have been eliminated without the quick thinking and cooperation of Mr Matakaiongo and his team.

“Thanks to John’s vigilance we were able to launch an immediate response,” he said.

“The response saw our team work tirelessly, spraying vegetation around the detection site, inspecting almost 2,000 traps, scouring more than 300 hectares of bushland, industrial areas and homes and deploying more than 180 pheromone traps.”

“Reports like John’s are the biggest weapon we have in the fight to protect the NSW environment, economy and community from the threat of pests and disease,” he said.

BMSB is a serious exotic insect known to feed on more than 300 hosts including nuts, grains, berries, cotton, citrus, soybean, nursery stock, ornamental and weed plant species.

In the United States, BMSB was first observed in 1996 and has since spread to 40 states and Canada. It has resulted in significant economic impacts including losses of up to 100 percent in Maryland peach crops.

Over winter they are known to be a serious nuisance and invade homes and indoor spaces in large numbers.

Greater Sydney Local Land Services Manager, David Hogan, said Spring is recognised as the danger period for new BMSB detections.

“BMSB is known to stow away in cargo coming out of the northern hemisphere between September and April,” he said.

“Anyone who works around or receives imported goods should always keep an eye out for pests, just like John and the Hager team.”

“BMSB can be found within the goods in containers, including boxes and packaging, and seek shelter in vehicles and machinery.”

More information on brown marmorated stink bug can be found on the NSW DPI website.

Chris Rehberg, the person who reported and photographed the REST in Bankstown.....

Resources for kids

NSW DPI has developed a Biosecurity Warrior Training Manual to assist children in understanding the importance of Biosecuirty.

This workbook has a range of activities to identify the Biosecurity Baddies and Goodies, plus a number of actions that you can do to help the biosecurity mission.

To download your copy of the Biosecuirty Warrior Training Manual click here.