The disease chestnut blight was first detected near Eurobin in the Ovens Valley in September 2010. Further surveillance detected the disease on fifteen other properties in the Ovens Valley in Victoria's north east.
This outbreak was the first-time chestnut blight had been detected in Australia and impacted significantly on the local chestnut industry which is valued at over $8 million annually to the Victorian economy.
Overseas outbreaks of chestnut blight have spread rapidly, with the disease severely impacting chestnut industries and chestnut and oak tree forests in Europe, Asia and the United States of America.
Agriculture Victoria has been working with affected growers and the national chestnut industry since 2010 to eradicate the disease.
Agriculture Victoria has completed over 740,000 tree inspections since 2010 and removed more than 5,000 diseased and at-risk chestnut trees from in and around infected chestnut groves since the outbreak was reported.
Suspect oak trees have also been removed from nearby infected chestnut groves as they were very likely to have been infected with chestnut blight and, as such, posed a threat to the successful eradication of the disease.
During 2017 further detections of chestnut blight were found on three properties. The infected trees were removed and burnt on site. These new detections of chestnut blight triggered an immediate review of the national chestnut blight response.
Spring surveillance has been completed. The national Consultative Committee on Emergency Plant Pests (CCEPP) will meet shortly to consider surveillance outcomes and other related information, in order to determine the next steps for the response.
For further information about host material restrictions into Victoria, see our industry notices link below.
The Ovens Valley Restricted Area remains in place. For further information about host material restrictions within Victoria, see our industry notices.
Chestnut blight is a declared exotic disease. If you suspect that you have found chestnut blight symptoms (see the about chestnut blight page for common symptoms), report it to Agriculture Victoria by phoning free call 136 186. Growers can send photographs of suspicious symptoms to: email@example.com or call for a free and confidential examination of the suspect tree.
Chestnut growers please note: Do not collect samples of suspected chestnut blight. Avoid any contact with the tree that is exhibiting symptoms, as handling could spread the disease.