Fruit flies found in new area in Adelaide

Fruit flies found in new area in Adelaide


PIRSA staff are out in force after a new fruit fly zone was declared


PIRSA staff have been out visiting households following a new fruit fly outbreak in north east Adelaide.

The staff have been easily identifiable, with orange overalls and identification, and will apply an organic bait to foliage and check fruit, while adhering to COVID-19 social distancing.

This new outbreak was declared in Klemzig after three Mediterranean fruit flies were found in traps by PIRSA staff as part of their surveillance activities.

Affected suburbs include Greenacres, Hampstead Gardens, Klemzig, Hillcrest, Manningham, Marden, Vale Park and Windsor Gardens.

Some of these areas fall within the existing Blair Athol and Campbelltown outbreak areas.

Executive Director of Biosecurity Nathan Rhodes said this outbreak represented a relatively thin strip of land between the two existing outbreak areas in Blair Athol and Campbelltown.

"With the seven other outbreaks across Adelaide in Campbelltown, Pooraka, Semaphore Park, Rosewater, Angle Park, Croydon Park and Blair Athol, we have been mindful that the eradication effort is not yet over and it's possible that a small number of flies will overwinter (similar to hibernation) during this response," he said.

"At this time of the year, the cold weather can slow, but not stop Mediterranean fruit fly activity, as it can overwinter as adults, eggs, and larvae (in fruit), or as pupae in the ground - and emerge as the weather warms.

"Citrus is the main fruit fly susceptible fruit in gardens at the moment, so now is the time to check any fruit on your trees - including oranges, mandarins, lemons and limes - for bruising or maggots, and report anything unusual to the Fruit Fly Hotline on 1300 666 010.

"It's also a good time to make sure your garden is tidy, picking up any fallen fruit off the ground and removing any unwanted fruit from your trees and placing it in your green bin, to help break the fruit fly life cycle.

"It is critical that residents follow our advice and do not move any fresh fruit or fruiting vegetables from their properties - including giving it away to family, neighbours and selling it online, as moving fruit can potentially spread this pest."

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Mr Rhodes said the latest detections showed some flies were still active, but also provided positive reinforcement that actions within existing outbreak areas were working.

"If we've detected these flies in this new zone, any active flies in the other outbreak areas should also be showing up," he said.

"Reassuringly, we're not finding flies in those areas and we've seen a significant drop off in fly detections since applying baiting and trapping controls in the existing outbreak areas.

"We are confident that applying the same proven controls to this new outbreak area will lead to successful eradication."

He said PIRSA teams were applying organic bait and checking fruit in the Klemzig outbreak area with a view to include the area in the Sterile Insect Technique program, starting in September.

"The SIT program will see up to 12 million sterile flies released per week into the outbreak areas and a surrounding buffer to combat any wild flies that might remain in those suburbs," he said.

"We have a 100 per cent success rate of eradicating fruit fly and we want to keep it that way, but we need residents to follow our advice and help us by giving easy access to their yards."

If no further wild flies or larvae are detected it is anticipated the quarantine in Klemzig will be lifted on December 23.

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