Fruit fly management for vegetable growers

Fruit fly management for vegetable growersFruit flies are recognised as one of the world’s most serious pests for horticulture.  They can breed rapidly, disperse widely and successfully infest most fruit and fruiting vegetables. The larvae not only destroy infested fruit, but are a major quarantine issue for both domestic and international markets.

In-field treatment solutions are needed to not only meet domestic and export market requirements, but also to ensure that there is product worth selling. Until August 2011, cover sprays of dimethoate and/or fenthion insecticides were commonly used to meet both production and market access requirements.  Following suspension of these chemicals from most use patterns, vegetable farmers have had to find other ways to control fruit fly.

As new chemistry is unlikely to solve this issue, growers will need to combine a range of fruit fly control measures in a “systems approach”. There is a range of tools potentially available, including chemical, physical, genetic and biological methods. Improved understanding of fly ecology as well as expanding control on an area wide basis may further enhance effectiveness of such tools.

As an outcome of project VG13042 on “New in-field treatment solutions to control fruit fly” AHR have produced a series of five videos on the strategies growers can use to manage fruit flies in vegetable crops. These focus on the fruit fly lifecycle, monitoring the population, use of protein baiting, MAT and female traps and finally barriers and hygiene.

The information in these videos is explained in more detail in the accompanying “Fruit fly management for vegetable growers” handbook (click here for electronic version). Printed copies can be obtained directly from AHR. Follow this link to contact AHR.

Click on the links bellow to view the new videos:

Controlling Fruit Fly in Vegetables: (1) Targeted Control

Controlling Fruit Flies in Vegetables: (2) Monitoring

Controlling Fruit Fly in Vegetables: (3) Food Based Baits

Controlling Fruit Fly in Vegetables: (4) Male Annihilation & Female-Biased Traps

Controlling Fruit Fly in Vegetables: (5) Netting, Repellents & Field Hygiene

This project has been funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited using the research and development vegetable levy and funds from the Australian Government. HIA