Post-harvest hygiene

Orchard or post-harvest hygiene is necessary to help break the fruit fly cycle. Autumn is generally the period for fruit flies to build up before winter so they’re able to survive the winter months and start a new seasonal cycle of fruit damage next spring. By successfully cleaning up your orchard, home garden and nearby untended land of potential fruit fly host material it is easier to break the fruit fly cycle, as no fruit means no fruit fly.

Fruit fly activity

Commercial growers in or near the below locations should continue to implement fruit fly control measures and be aware of fruit fly activity nearby. These locations had trapping sites registering 12 or more Queensland fruit fly in total over recent weeks.

Ardmona Merrigum Shepparton East

Echuca Mooroopna Tatura

Euroa Orrvale Toolamba

Invergordon Rochester Undera

Kyabram Shepparton

These locations are of concern as they could become sites from which large numbers of fruit fly establish and then spread. It is important that anyone with gardens and orchards in these areas take precautions to reduce the ability of fruit fly to infest fruit.

Controlling fruit fly

Essential control activities include:

◦ Monitor traps for fruit fly population presence and build-up

◦ Check fruit for fruit fly infestation

◦ Weekly baiting

◦ Carry out after harvest clean-up

◦ Keep house gardens, creek banks, compost heaps and nearby roadsides clear

◦ Notify authorities of nearby untended or feral fruiting plants

◦ Ensure traps, lures, toxicants, approved pesticides, baits and application equipment are in supply and good condition.

Weather outlook

Fruit fly activity typically declines in late April and eggs or larvae in fruit or pupae in the ground die due to the cold, however forecast weather conditions suggest the fruit fly season will extend further into autumn than usual this year. Fruit fly activity in the form of mating, egg-laying and consequent fruit damage followed by adult emergence may remain significant into May if mild weather continues and there is a delay in cooler temperatures hitting.