As far back as the 1920s patches of dead trees were visible in the hills surrounding Perth, Western Australia (Dell et al., 2005.). By 1964, when the causal agent was identified as Phytophthora cinnamomi, the disease had spread and was causing widespread decline of the dominant forest species Eucalyptus marginata (jarrah) (see Hee et al., Chapter 14, this volume). The disease is known as 'jarrah dieback'; a particularly misleading title for a disease that has decimated extensive regions in this fragile biodiversity hotspot. In Western Australia P. cinnamomi is known as a biological bulldozer and 2284 of the 5710 described plant species are susceptible or highly susceptible (Shearer et al., 2004) (see Hee et al., Chapter 14, this volume). This is just one example of the impact caused by invasive Phytophthora species and there are many additional examples from natural ecosystems, agriculture and agroforestry worldwide. The common thread is human-mediated movement, and the origin of many species remains a mystery
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.