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New resources announced as fruit fly outbreak spreads

A new outbreak of Queensland fruit fly has today been declared in the Riverland, with 70 people now on the ground responding.

More resources have been committed by the SA Government to combat new fruit fly outbreaks in the Riverland and metropolitan Adelaide.

A new outbreak of Queensland fruit fly has today been declared in Renmark West following the discovery of larvae in a resident’s backyard. This follows two outbreaks already declared in Renmark West and Monash.

An outbreak of Mediterranean fruit fly has also been declared south of Adelaide in Black Forest, following larval detections in home grown fruit.

A 1.5-kilometre radius outbreak area has been established at both new locations with a 7.5-kilometre suspension area established around the Black Forest outbreak zone and a 15-kilometre suspension area around the new Renmark West outbreak zone.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development David Basham said more than 70 staff are on the ground in the Riverland responding to the outbreaks.

“We are throwing everything we can at the Riverland fruit fly outbreaks as we recognise the importance of eradicating this pest as fast as possible. No stone is being left unturned to protect our $1.3 billion fruit fly vulnerable horticulture industry,” Minister Basham said.

“These outbreaks are impacting the stone fruit and citrus industries right now and we are working with growers to ensure they have treatment options available so fruit can still reach market where possible. 

“Officers are already on the ground in the new outbreak area in Renmark West applying organic bait and removing fruit from affected properties.

“Residents and businesses within the outbreak areas will be receiving information from the Department of Primary Industries and Regions about the outbreak and associated quarantine restrictions, detailing what part they can play in preventing the spread of these pests.

“Since the initial outbreak at Renmark West, the Marshall Liberal Government has been liaising closely with the Riverland horticulture industry particularly in regard to the movement of produce and quarantine restrictions,” Minister Basham said.

The outbreaks have no impact on the fruit fly free status for the rest of the Riverland Pest Free Area or the State. A dedicated line has been established for industry queries – 1800 255 556.

Residents in the affected outbreak areas can help by:

  • Allowing easy access to gardens so PIRSA staff can do their work quickly – they’ll keep the necessary social distancing.
  • Picking up all fallen and over ripe fruit in your backyard as well as remove any remaining fruit from fruit trees. This fruit can be disposed of in your green waste bin if in metropolitan Adelaide. For those in the Riverland please contact the Fruit Fly Hotline on 1300 666 010 for advice on disposal.
  • Reporting (and sealing in an airtight container) any suspect fruit fly or maggots in home grown fruit and vegetables to the Fruit Fly Hotline on 1300 666 010.
  • Not moving home-grown fruit or fruiting vegetables within the 1.5 km outbreak area, including sharing with family and friends, to reduce the risk of potential spread.

At this stage, if no further wild flies or larvae are detected, it is anticipated the outbreak areas will remain in place until:

  • Black Forest and surrounding areas, as well as all other metropolitan fruit fly outbreak areas until at least 5 April 2021.
  • Both Renmark West outbreaks until at least 6 April 2021
  • Monash until at least 22 March 2021.

For more information, including detailed maps of the metropolitan Adelaide and Riverland outbreak areas, quarantine zones and suspension areas visit www.pir.sa.gov.au/fruitfly

Reports of larvae or fruit flies can be made to the Fruit Fly hotline on 1300 666 010.

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