Pick, prune, protect and help stop Queensland Fruit Fly

There is an extra splash of yellow in Euroa and across the Goulburn Murray Valley, reminding home gardeners of the role they play in reducing the spread of Queensland Fruit Fly (QFF).

‘No Flies On Us’ signage has been positioned in a number of locations to help spread the message on Queensland Fruit Fly and its devastating effect on our local horticultural industry.

Many of our favourite fruit and vegetables are common fruit fly hosts and with lots of these fruit and vegetable in fruit at this time of year it is important the community is aware that a few simple steps can make a huge difference in protecting our region against the pest. Citrus fruits, apples, apricots, nectarines, peaches, pears, cherries, strawberries, capsicums, eggplant and tomatoes are just some of the fruit and vegetables that provide a breeding ground for fruit fly.

Home gardeners and property owners with host plants or trees in their garden are asked to take a number of steps to assist in reducing the prevalence of fruit fly. Goulburn Murray Valley Regional Fruit Fly Coordinator, Ross Abberfield reminded home gardeners and anyone with a fruit tree or host plant to pick, prune and protect to help stop the spread of QFF.

“We are asking people to pick up fallen or rotten produce, prune your fruit tree as needed and protect fruit and vegetables through the use of netting, traps, bait spray and insecticide where appropriate,” Mr Abberfield said.

“Traps are inexpensive and can be purchased at hardware and nursery suppliers or can alternatively be made at home and allow property owners to monitor whether there is a fruit fly population in their area,” he said.

Other simple control measures include correctly disposing of effected fruit and vegetables. If your fruit or vegetables have been effected by fruit fly it should be placed in the freezer or microwave before it is disposed of. Alternatively, unwanted fruit can be placed in a sealed plastic bag and left in the sun for 5-7 days to kill any maggots prior to disposal.

“The region’s multi-million dollar horticulture industry is a critical driver for the local economy and by working together with growers, home gardeners and the broader community we are best placed to protect our region from the devastating effects of QFF,” Mr Abberfield said.

For more information about the simple steps you can take to reduce the spread of fruit fly, go to www.gmv-qldfruitfly.com.au