The WA Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development has stepped up its efforts to combat Mediterranean fruit fly in Carnarvon with a stronger focus on compliance to back up control measures.
The department will monitor wild Medfly populations and follow-up with property inspections in Medfly hotspots to help landholders do the right thing and support Carnarvon’s $80 million horticulture industry.
Department senior technical officer Ernie Steiner said a pilot project to reduce the number of Medflies in the region started back in 2015, focused on Carnarvon growers and town residents.
“The project has used a combination of techniques to control Medfly in Carnarvon, including Sterile Insect Technology, orchard hygiene and baiting programs,” Mr Steiner said.
“Our trapping and monitoring has shown the Medfly population is down to one of its lowest levels in two years.
“All landholders in Carnarvon need to control Mediterranean fruit fly on their properties, and this can be achieved through good orchard hygiene, baiting and trapping.
“This next step in the project is to work with landholders to ensure they comply with the Biosecurity and Agriculture Management Act 2007 and share the responsibility of protecting Western Australia’s valuable agriculture industries.”
Mr Steiner said if necessary, the department could issue a Pest Control Notice to landholders to take specific measures to prevent fruit fly breeding.
The project has partnered with the Carnarvon Growers Association (CGA), a Recognised Biosecurity Group which has worked extensively with locals on fruit fly baiting, trapping and crop hygiene activities.
CGA baiting supervisor Ian Foxley welcomed the introduction of compliance activities.
The Medfly activities are part of a Boosting Biosecurity Defences project, supported by Royalties for Regions and Horticulture Innovation Australia.
More information on effective Mediterranean fly control measures is available on the department website.
Source: WA DPIRD
Featured Image: A pilot project to reduce the number of Medflies in the region started in Carnarvon in 2015.
Image supplied by WA DPIRD