An outbreak of Queensland fruit fly (Q-fly) has been detected in Loxton following the discovery of seven male flies. 

Primary Industries and Regions (PIRSA) advises that a 1.5 kilometre outbreak area and 15 kilometre suspension area have been established around the detection point and quarantine restrictions apply in the Newton Road area.

The 1.5 kilometre outbreak area is bounded by Barker Street to the north and Middleton Road to the East.

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 have 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.

Mr 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 today with the Riverland Fruit Fly Committee on this coordinated response and PIRSA is already visiting affected growers.”

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.
  • Report any maggots found in fruit or fruiting vegetables immediately to the Fruit Fly Hotline on 1300 666 010.
  • 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.Vinehealth Australia is working with PIRSA to identify and contact all vineyard owners within the outbreak and suspension areas to discuss quarantine restrictions. 

Given that these restrictions will still be in place when harvest commences in January 2019, quarantine requirements for the movement of grapes out of and transiting through the outbreak or suspension zone will need to be complied with. These requirements are currently being finalised and will be communicated to vineyard owners, wineries and the industry as soon as possible.

Click here for more information, including detailed maps of outbreak areas, the quarantine zone and Suspension Area.