Live BMSB numbers down
The final figures for the 2022/23 Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) season confirm a sharp decline in live interceptions – nearly 30% in fact.
There were 44 live BMSB intercepted during the season, which ran from 1 September to 30 April. The tally for the previous season was 62.
Most of the interceptions were made at the border (36) and similar to previous seasons, most were associated with cargo. There was however an uptick in passenger pathway interceptions, not unexpected given the removal of international travel restrictions.
There were no detections of BMSB aggregations – bunches of 10 or more bugs.
There was also good news regarding imported vehicles, which are a common hiding place for the hitchhiking pest. This season, there weren’t any BMSB detected during checks of arriving vehicle carriers. The few live bugs that were reported were found by crew en route to New Zealand during surveillance.
The decline in live interceptions is likely due to offshore treatment and other import requirements that make it harder for BMSB to enter New Zealand in high-risk cargo. You can read more detail about the season and biosecurity activities that contributed to such a positive result here.