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Introduction Eucalypt decline is widespread in forests and rural lands throughout temperate Australia (e.g. Jurskis 2004a). A wide range of causes has been proposed, including salt, climatic perturbations and a variety of pests, pathogens and parasites (e.g. Jurskis and Turner 2002; Jurskis 2004a). Psyllids and bellbirds are often associated with forest decline in south-eastern Australia (e.g. Stone 1999). Decline involving bellbirds has been portrayed as a disease of complex aetiology (e.g. Stone 1999; Old 2000), but this is essentially an elaboration of the 'germ theory' (Manion and Lachance 1992) that 'infection' by a single 'pathogen' kills the trees.