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Collaborating with Macquarie University

Goulburn Murray Valley Fruit Fly project: Area-wide fruit fly management

The Goulburn Murray Valley Fruit Fly project has helped contribute to a 60 per cent reduction in the Queensland fruit fly.

The project has brought together community, government and industry to combat the impact of the fruit fly, which is considered one of the most serious pests for growers in Queensland, Victoria, New South Wales and the Northern Territory.

The GMV Fruit Fly Governance Group recently met with Agriculture Victoria and the Manager of the National Fruit Fly Council in Cobram, Victoria to discuss opportunities to further enhance the coordinated management of the pest.

GMV Fruit Fly project Coordinator Ross Abberfield and the GMV project are currently collaborating with Macquarie University in running the SITPlus pilot in Cobram, where adding caffeine to the diet of fruit flies to speeding up sexual maturation has been a key part of the study. It is hoped that by increasing the sex drive of sterile fruit flies would more effectively spread infertility in the pest population.

SITPlus Program Director Dan Ryan said it was pleasing to see the early results of the pilot: “The pilot is establishing the basis for effective urban suppression to help growers in the Cobram region. I’m very happy to see good collaboration happening between Agriculture Victoria, Moira Council and the SITPlus partners for the benefit of the Cobram growers.”

The recent collaboration between key agencies was also an opportunity to discuss the National Fruit Fly Strategy 2020-2025 which provides a framework for national cooperation on fruit fly issues.


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