Queensland Fruit Fly Update

A Queensland fruit fly (Qfly) eradication program has been underway since March 2020 in the suburbs of Dalkeith, Nedlands and Claremont. 

As part of the eradication program, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) declared a Quarantine Area (QA), which was extended on 10 July 2020 to include parts of five new suburbs - Mount Claremont, Shenton Park, Cottesloe, Peppermint Grove and Crawley. 

The QA has been expanded due to Qfly detections close to the edge of the Outbreak Zone. This means that DPIRD can carry out surveillance and introduce fruit management and movement requirements around these detection points. This provides the best chance of preventing further spread.

Anyone within the QA MUST NOT move Qfly host fruit out of the area, unless treated. 'Treated' means cooked, frozen for at least 24 hours, or solarised (sealing fruit in a heavy duty black plastic bag and placing in direct sunlight on a hard surface for at least seven days). Everyone living in the Quarantine area must also regularly remove ripe and ripening host fruit from plants and from the ground, and treat the fruit prior to disposal.

DPIRD will be requiring access to all properties within the QA in the coming months to carry out a range of eradication activities. This will include applying insecticide bait to host trees, placing/monitoring lure traps, inspecting host fruit, and collecting fruit to test for Qfly larvae. Owners/ occupiers will be notified.

This is DPIRD’s largest Qfly eradication program since Western Australia’s very first Qfly outbreak in 1989. Councils/Shires are working closely with DPIRD, and asking that residents and businesses within the QA support the program, as eradication will be dependent on a joint effort – most importantly complying with QA requirements and supporting property visits.

DPIRD acknowledges eradication activities may cause some inconvenience, but it is imperative the state remains free of Qfly, which is the most important economic pest of Australia’s horticultural industries. Freedom from Qfly provides WA access to lucrative export markets, and it also makes it easier for backyard gardeners to grow fruit fly free fruit. If Qfly were to become established in WA, we would be the only Australian state to have both Qfly AND Mediterranean fruit fly, which is endemic throughout WA. 

Nedlands CEO Mark Goodlet says eradicating Qfly is a top priority, given the high risk it represents to Western Australia’s agricultural sector – and to most gardens in the City of Nedlands. Every effort should be made to help the government wipe out this pest. 

Brochures about the Qfly eradication program can be obtained from the City Administration Centre or from Nedlands Library and Mount Claremont Library.  View the Factsheets and FAQs here.

Residents can find out more about the eradication program and how they can assist in eliminating this pest by visiting the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) website or by contacting DPIRD’s Pest and Disease Information Service on 9368 3080 or padis@dpird.wa.gov.au.