Dr Paul Umina

Research FellowUminaP
Room 106
+613 8344 2523


Dr Paul Umina has been a contributor in the field of agricultural science in Australia and internationally. Paul’s research has advanced the way other scientists and researchers approach pest management in Australia. Early in his career he conducted one of the first studies demonstrating how genetic markers in insects can be used to monitor climate change. He was integral to the discovery of insecticide resistance in the redlegged earth mite, one of Australia’s most significant agricultural pests. He has also researched chemical sensitivities in various agricultural insects, identifying new insecticides and understanding the role beneficial insects play in pest control.

Paul is a leading researcher and educator in sustainable approaches to pest management. Paul has delivered workshops on insect identification and IPM for hundreds of farmers, agronomists and other industry personnel.  He launched the successful newsletter, PestFacts south-eastern, which is distributed to nearly 1,000 people.

Paul has authored over 30 peer-reviewed scientific articles, almost 60 consultancy reports, and over 50 industry and technical publications, including papers in Australian Farm Journal, Australian Grain and Farming Ahead.


Current Projects:

Management of insecticide resistance in RLEM and screening new MoA chemistry

National coordination of invertebrate pest research and insecticide resistance management

Surveillance and management of insecticide resistance in green peach aphids and other grain pests

National Invertebrate Pest Initiative

Insecticide resistance and alternative chemistries for mite control


Victorian Young Tall Poppy of the Year, Australian Institute of Policy and Science, 2012.

Staff Excellence Award in Engagement, The University of Melbourne, 2011.

Recent Publications (2010 – 2014):

Macfadyen, S., Hardie, D., Fagan, L., Stefanova, K., Perry , K., DeGraaf, H., Holloway, J., Spafford, H. and Umina, P. 2014. Reducing insecticide use in broad-acre grains production: an Australian study. PLOS ONE (in press).

Arthur, A, Hoffmann, A and Umina P. (2013). Impact of Halotydeus destructor on crop seedlings at different plant developmental stages and levels of moisture stress. Environmental Entomology 45(5): 998-1012.

Jenkins, S., Hoffmann, A.A., McColl, S., Tsitsilas, A. and Umina, P.A. (2013). Synthetic pesticides in agro-ecosystems: are they as detrimental to nontarget invertebrate fauna as we suspect? Journal of Economic Entomology 106 (2): 756-775.

Arthur AL, McColl S and Umina PA. (2013). Synthetic pesticides show little efficacy against Balaustium medicagoense (Prostigmata: Erythraeidae) in the field compared with other pest mites. Australian Journal of Entomology 52(3) 259-267.

Hill MP, Elith J, Macfadyen S, Umina PA and Hoffmann AA. (2012). Understanding niche shifts: using current and historical data to model the invasive redlegged earth mite, Halotydeus destructor. Diversity and Distributions 18: 191-203.

Hill MP, Hoffmann AA, McColl SA and Umina PA. (2012). Distribution of cryptic blue oat mite species (Penthaleus spp.) in Australia: current and future climate conditions. Agricultural and Forest Entomology 14: 127-137.

Miller AD, Umina PA, Weeks AR and Hoffmann AA. (2012). Population Genetics of the Wheat Curl Mite (Aceria tosichella Keifer) in Australia – Implications for the Management of Wheat Pathogens. Bulletin of Entomological Research 102: 199-212.

Umina PA, Weeks AR, Roberts J, Jenkins S, Mangano P, Lord A and Micic S. (2012). The current status of pesticide resistance in Australian populations of the redlegged earth mite (Halotydeus destructor). Pest Management Science 68: 889-896.

McColl SA, Khan M and Umina PA. (2011). Review of the biology and control of Creontiades dilutus (Stal) (Hemiptera: Miridae). Australian Journal of Entomology 50: 107-117.

Roberts JMK, Weeks AR, Hoffmann AA and Umina P. (2011). Does Bdellodes lapidaria (Acari: Bdellidae) have a role in biological control of the springtail pest, Sminthurus viridis (Collembola: Sminthuridae) in south-eastern Australia? Biological Control 58: 222-229.

Roberts JMK, Umina PA, Hoffmann AA and Weeks AR. (2011). Population dynamics and diapause response of the springtail pest, Sminthurus viridis (Collembola: Sminthuridae), in south-eastern Australia. Journal of Economic Entomology 104: 465-473

Tsitsilas A, Hoffmann AA, Weeks AR and Umina PA. (2011). Impact of groundcover manipulations within windbreaks on mite pests and their natural enemies. Australian Journal of Entomology 50: 37-47.

Arthur AL, Weeks AR, Umina PA and Hoffmann AA. (2010). Survival and reproduction of the pest mites Balaustium medicagoense and Bryobia spp. on winter grain crops. Experimental and Applied Acarology 52: 141-153.


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