Russian wheat aphid in rice

2018 Rice Industry Field Day Poster

Russian Wheat Aphid (RWA) was first found in Australia in 2016, and first appeared in drill-sown rice crops in 2017. In wheat and barley RWA generally causes damage through a plant response to the insect’s saliva. Similar responses have not been documented in rice. It is not known to spread viruses that affect rice. RWA seems to disappear when the weather heats up and/or permanent water is applied. There have been very few reports of it on aerial sown crops. 

RWA numbers can get very high, with up to 10 aphids found on individual plants at the 2-3 leaf stage. These numbers are likely to be directly affecting seedling growth.

Mark Stevens, Plant Biosecurity Research, NSW DPI, Rice Industry Field Day, 2018