QFF Update FOR COMMERCIAL HORTICULTURE – always seek agronomy advice!

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If you haven’t already, now is the time to install traps, apply bait and improve production area hygiene.
 
TRAPS

  • Refresh or replace fruit fly monitoring traps (have some male QFF traps in high risk areas like dams/creeks and home gardens, and aim to have all production areas with in 250m of a trap)
  • Install some protein (food) based fruit fly traps in key areas
  • Check traps at least weekly or more often if possible

BAIT**

  • Apply protein bait as soon as traps indicate QFF in the area, or earlier if a high risk crop (months earlier)!!
  • Mix fruit fly bait with water (mix well to avoid clogging jets) and add approved insecticide (or use the premixed organic brand)
  • Use a focused stream (jet nozzle) and apply whilst moving, to apply droplets of bait onto leaves of trees etc – for crops with fruit or ground crops focus on the perimeter and other foliage trees (*1-1.5m high)
    • This can be done using a tank mounted on a tractor/bike/ute/trailer or even a using a knapsack – the idea is to keep moving and spread the droplets as broadly as possible
    • Remember the house garden and fence lines, sheds and fruit disposal areas
  • Re apply weekly or more often if in a high risk area
  • Re apply after rainfall (it washes off the leaf)
  • Continue for a minimum of four weeks, unless more fruit fly pressure evolves (where the practice will need to continue until the pressure reduces to 0)
  • Bait is very effective as the hungry flies seek it out, and does not target good bugs
  • Bait is most effective if everyone in your area is also baiting

PRODUCTION AREA HYGIENE

  • Pick all fruit before it falls to the ground (the larvae will pupate in the ground)
  • Destroy all fruit in the ground (mulcher (most destructive), slasher if low enough (some impact), tractor tyres(some impact)
  • Bury infested fruit in a deep hole (with at least 500mm compacted cover)
  • Consider fruit waste removal options to reduce QFF risk
  • Investigate non commercial host fruit trees/plants and consider removal

COVER SPRAYS**

  • Commercial production needs to evaluate if crops are at risk from QFF and investigate the use of cover sprays
  • When applying cover sprays, careful consideration of biological predators for other IPM is required
  • When applying cover sprays, careful consideration is needed  with respect to WHPs, MRLs, and target market requirements

**All chemical use needs to be in accordance with the label and APVMA permits and registrations