Management of sucking bugs in Rubus

Integrated pest management of sucking bugs in Australian Rubus

Degree type


Closing date

6 March 2023



Citizenship requirement


About the research project

The Australian Rubus berry industry is in the midst of a rapid expansion. These gains have been derived in part by the increased utilisation of covered cropping systems. However, these systems coupled with reductions in agrochemical use have created ideal environments for pestiferous insects including sucking bugs such as mirids and pentatomids. Further, due to consumer driven expectations, a return to chemically intensive berry production methodologies is no longer seen by industry as an acceptable method of sucking bug control. This project seeks to advance Australian integrated pest management (IPM) of sucking bugs in blackberries and raspberries by assessing the efficacy of potential IPM controls for these pests. In order to provide improved pest monitoring strategies, this project will also investigate the use of, and where relevant isolate and field test, the pheromone cues used by sucking bugs for pest control or crop monitoring activities in commercial Rubus production systems.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Dr Stephen Quarrell


The successful applicant will receive a scholarship which provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $28,854 per annum (2022 rate, indexed annually) for 3.5 years
  • a relocation allowance of up to $2,000
  • a tuition fees offset covering the cost of tuition fees for up to four years (domestic applicants only)

International applicants will receive a University of Tasmania Fees Offset for up to four years.


Applicants should review the Higher Degree by Research minimum entry requirements.

Additional eligibility criteria specific to this project/scholarship:

  • Applications are open to Domestic/ International/ Onshore applicants
  • Applications are open to applications from agricultural entomology discipline background only
  • English language score must be above minimum entry requirements for this project

Selection Criteria

The project is competitively assessed and awarded.  Selection is based on academic merit and suitability to the project as determined by the College.

Additional essential selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Demonstrated understanding of integrated pest management essential

Additional desirable selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Understanding of insect chemical ecology or organic chemistry strongly desirable

Application process

There is a three-step application process:

  1. Select your project, and check you meet the eligibility and selection criteria;
  2. Contact the Primary Supervisor, Dr Stephen Quarrell to discuss your suitability and the project's requirements; and
  3. Submit an application by the closing date listed above.
    • Copy and paste the title of the project from this advertisement into your application. If you don’t correctly do this your application may be rejected.
    • As part of your application, you will be required to submit a covering letter, a CV including 2 x referees and your project research proposal.

Following the application closing date applications will be assessed within the College. Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome by email by the advertised outcome date.

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