The Primary Industries and Regions South Australia, (PIRSA), has declared a 1.5 kilometre outbreak area and 15 kilometre suspension area around a detection point of seven male Queensland fruit fly in the Newton Road area of Loxton, Riverland.

The 1.5 kilometre outbreak area is bounded by Barker Street to the north and Middleton Road to the East. PIRSA said that this outbreak has no impact on the fruit fly free status for the rest of the Riverland Pest Free Area or the state.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said PIRSA staff had immediately commenced an eradication program aimed at eliminating fruit flies from the outbreak area and nearby surrounds.

“The State Government, industry and community members have run simulated outbreak exercises this year which has assisted in preparing local people for the roles they need to play in swiftly eradicating this pest from the region,” said Minister Whetstone.

“Residents and businesses within the outbreak area will be receiving information from PIRSA about the outbreak and associated quarantine restrictions, detailing what part they can play in preventing its spread.

“We are liaising closely with the horticulture industry in the Riverland, particularly in regards to the movement of produce and quarantine restrictions.

“A dedicated phone number – 1800 255 556 – has been established for industry queries.

“An organic bait spotting program will be undertaken with staff also concentrating on the removal of fallen fruit from properties within the affected outbreak zone area.”

Minister Whetstone said South Australia has been under severe pressure from fruit fly at every border with other states committing less of a focus to battling the pest.

“I am confident we are doing everything we can to eradicate fruit flies from the outbreak area in Loxton as soon as possible,” he said.

“A meeting was held [on Friday] with the Riverland Fruit Fly Committee on this coordinated response and PIRSA is already visiting affected growers.”

PIRSA said that residents and businesses inside the quarantine area can help eliminate fruit fly by practising a few simple measures, including:

  • DO NOT give away or move any fruit or fruiting vegetables, including tomatoes, capsicums, chillies and eggplants unless cooked or preserved
  • DO NOT leave fruit or fruiting vegetables lying on the ground
  • DO NOT compost any fruit or fruiting vegetables, including those purchased from a shop
  • Arrangements will be made for the management of green waste within the Outbreak Area. Contact PIRSA for more details.
  • DO report any maggots found in fruit or fruiting vegetables immediately to the Fruit Fly Hotline on 1300 666 010
  • DO cook or preserve excess fruit and fruiting vegetables.

At this stage, if no further wild flies or larvae are detected it is anticipated the quarantine zone in Loxton will remain in place until at least 28 February 2019.

For more information, including detailed maps of outbreak areas, the quarantine zone and Suspension Area are available on the PIRSA website.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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