What is PestNet?

PestNet is a community network that helps people throughout the world obtain rapid advice and information on plant protection. Topics include pest identification from digital images, pest outbreak alerts, pest management (biological, cultural, and chemical), and biosecurity matters. Also, several times a week, posts are provided of interest from the world’s press, online journals and websites.

PestNet users include crop growers, extension officers, researchers, and quarantine officers.

Why is there a need for PestNet?

Crop pests – insects, pathogens and weeds – are always present, damaging crops grown for home consumption, domestic markets or for export. New pests can spread from country to country and threaten agricultural production and biodiversity.

If growers and plant health professionals are to manage pest problems and protect their rural industries, they need access to specialist scientific and technical advice on the identification and management of plant pests. And they need it quickly and cheaply. PestNet, with hundreds of members worldwide, can help.

Joining PestNet

You can view messages to PestNet without joining, and you can search for past submissions. But if you want to post a message or respond to one, we ask you to join. This is to prevent the list of submissions being overwhelmed by malicious software applications, so-called ‘bots’. Join or just view submissions here.  If joining, either i) register a new account or ii) register one of four social media accounts.

You can also join on mobile devices. Download the PPP+W apps, choose Full or Mini fact sheets, Browse Fact Sheets, select any fact sheet, View Discussion, and tap on the green circle with the white cross. Then select “Register as a new user” or a social media account to login.

Recent developments

The online PestNet Community has joined forces with another PestNet entity – Pacific Pests, Pathogen & Weeds (PPP+W) fact sheets. These two apps are available online at http://www.pestnet.org/ or can be downloaded for mobile devices from Google Play and the Apple Store.

You can now access the PPPW fact sheets while using the PestNet Community, and access the PestNet community from within every PPPW fact sheet. 

History of PestNet & PPP+W fact sheets


It was established over 20 years ago using the Yahoo! Groups email service. (now defunct). Initially, it focused on Pacific island countries, but now anyone needing advice on pests, diseases or weeds, anywhere in the world, is welcome to join. It is backed by plant pathologists, entomologists, agronomists, with years of experience. All messages are moderated. In addition, topics of potential interest appearing on the Internet are provided every day or so to members.

Pacific Pest, Pathogen & Weeds
PestNet started writing pest fact sheets 15 years ago and there are now more than 500 in the app. Here, there is also a Pacific focus, but many of the fact sheets are relevant for other regions too.

Note that a summary of the messages sent to PestNet from 1999 to 2017 can be found here.

Further information about the PestNet online app, the mobile apps and the Pest Fact Sheet apps can be accessed via the drop-down menu under the “Resources” tab on the main menu bar.