Wheat streak mosiac virus

Wheat streak mosaic virus


  • Wheat curl mite is the primary source of wheat streak mosiac virus (WSMV)

  • WSMV also affects oats, barley, rye and a variety of grass weeds

  • This virus is found in all wheat growing regions of Australia


  • WSMV causes leaf mottling and streaking on younger leaves

  • Streaks turn yellow and develop into blotches, forming a  yellow and green mosaic

  • Affected plants can die or become stunted

  • Heads on infected plants can be sterile or shrivelled


  • Up to 100% yield loss has been recorded when the virus has infected young susceptible plants




















Control of summer volunteer cereals and grasses reduces the number of WCM that can invade autumn sown crops. When possible, delay sowing in autumn until temperatures are too low for mite activity.

Links and Resources

DAFWA - Wheat streak mosaic virus & wheat curl mite

Introduction, distribution, symptoms, spread, green bridge hosts, seed, yield losses, and management options. Published 2009.

DEPI VIC - Identification and management of field crop diseases in Victoria. Wheat streak mosaic virus

Introduction, and what to look for. Information is very brief. Published 2012.

DPI NSW - Wheat streak mosiac virus and the wheat curl mite

4 page PDF. Symptoms, background, effect on yield, disease cycle, host range, spread, and control. Published 2005.

GRDC - Wheat curl mite

Key messages, about wheat curl mite, what is it, how does it spread, ideal conditions, management tools, and frequently asked questions. Published 2009.