The State Government has ramped up the fight against a Queensland fruit fly outbreak at Lindsay Point in Victoria with the release of millions of sterile flies this week.
The on-ground operation within the 1.5 kilometre outbreak area will involve the release of sterile Queensland fruit flies produced at the Port Augusta-based National Sterile Insect Technology (SIT) facility.
Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said the sterile fly release at Lindsay Point is a key tool in the cross-border eradication response.
“Working with our team on the ground, as well as Agriculture Victoria, we have taken a pro-active approach to the eradication of Queensland fruit fly at Lindsay Point with the release of millions of sterile flies into the outbreak area,” said Minister Whetstone.
“It is important to emphasise that releasing SIT fruit flies in the outbreak area over the next month is just one component of the eradication program which also includes hygiene and baiting operations.
“The State Government has been working with growers in the Victorian outbreak area and Riverland citrus growers in the suspension area as part of the eradication response.
“The SIT release further demonstrates South Australia’s leadership in the adoption of fruit fly technology.”
Minister Whetstone said ensuring South Australia maintains its fruit fly free status is vital for the state’s international market access.
“The State Government is investing significantly to protect South Australia’s $1.2 billion horticulture industry vulnerable to fruit fly with $1.5 million committed to upgrading the Yamba Quarantine Station as part of the zero tolerance approach,” said Minister Whetstone.
“It is important South Australians continue to spread the message to visitors reminding them not to bring prohibited fruit fly host material into the state and put our fruit fly free status at risk.
“It only takes one infected piece of fruit brought into South Australia to cause widespread devastation for our horticultural industries.”
Without further detections, the Lindsay Point quarantine zone will be lifted on 22 December 2019.
For further information on the eradication response, visit www.pir.sa.gov.au