Brisbane Local Food

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A report on a talk on Fruit Fies from the Nambour gardening show

Fruit Fly talk by Professor Richard Drew

Fruit flies have spread down to Victoria and now some have been discovered in Auckland.

We used to treat with systemic cover sprays but these are not used very much now and growers now have had to turn to less harmful (to human health) methods. These systemic sprays would be ingested by people eating the sprayed fruit as the insecticide travelled into and through the fruit

Adult Fruit Flies can travel 20 to 90 kilometres to reach fruit targets, this is before they mate.
When they have mated they stay within a reasonably small radius of your backyard.

They feed on proteins that they get from the leaves of the fruit trees, etc. They then take 1 to 1 1/2 weeks to mate and a female can lay up to 1000 eggs. They mate at around dusk on the underside of leaves in the orchard, etc.
Protein bait spays aim to target the Fruit Flies before they have commenced laying. They are an important part of the Fruit Fly eradication programme. Once they have commenced laying the Protein baits will not work.

Ammonia and fruit juice traps are not very successful.

Different traps do different jobs. Traps which are in containers do not work very well, except in trapping males. Open Traps work better than ones in containers.

FRUITION traps were developed at Griffith Uni by Professor Drew

FRUITION traps are a blue orb which are hung in the host tree to attract Qld Fruit Fly but yellow to attract many of the other Fruit Fly Types such as the Cucumber Fruit Fly. The sticky traps attempt to mimic the shape of a fruit. They hang in trees and have an odour sachet which attracts all stages of the male and female flies, even the mature females which lay the eggs. They catch the Fruit Flies by way of sticky surfaces and are not enclosed in any container.. They also catch the Cucumber Flies which attack pumpkins, etc. these look very like the Qld Fruit fly.
A comparison of FRUITION, CERA and BIO traps saw the FRUITION catch 99, the CERA 10, and the BIO 1.
Nets are effective barriers, they do not have to reach down to the ground as Fruit Flies attack from on high.

My own way of  dealing with fruit flies is with white vege netting made by NetPro. This is a Qld company based in Stanthorpe. I will be trying the FRUITION traps and will report back on these.

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Comment by Susan on August 4, 2019 at 18:38

I Lol Andy.  Do you know that they have not stopped in my garden this”winter”. Fortunately, they are only hitting the trombonccino. bottoms at the moment so I still get the rest of the fruit but they’ll be after my strawberries and toms soon enough

Comment by Andrew Cumberland on August 2, 2019 at 22:25

I didn't know you were a scientist!  I was a researcher. I published an article in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Social Science about predicting with an offender would reoffend and then tailoring the frequency of probation visits accordingly.  I guess I could club those damn fruit flies with the journal?  

Comment by Susan on August 2, 2019 at 21:17

Hi Elaine, I have done all that already.  I was a scientist for 10 years so am quite good at research :) The difficulty is that there is no place listed as selling and only a phone number.  I have tried it once and did not get a reply to my message.  I can’t be bothered chasing it up further and was hoping that maybe someone at the talk got a heads up on how to buy this product.  Doesn’t seem like the smartest business practice in the world the way they seem to be selling it. 

Comment by Jeff Kiehne on August 2, 2019 at 11:03

Fruition fruit fly trap developed and marketed by AgNova Technologies Pty Ltd, an Australian Company based in Melbourne.AgNova Technologies are on Facebook and have website  but do not seem to be on sale any where . has contact details Professor Emeritus Richard Drew but no mention of how to buy a trap.

Comment by Andrew Cumberland on August 2, 2019 at 1:04

Thanks Elaine.  

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on August 2, 2019 at 0:43

Search Agnova Technologies.

Comment by Susan on August 1, 2019 at 21:02

If anyone can source the fruition traps , I would love to know where you get it.  I heard a podcast about them 2 years ago and try as I might could not find a way to source them

Comment by Jeff Kiehne on August 1, 2019 at 7:55

They need to look at GMO if they can modify can make the pests less efficient at causing the damage .If cane toads had there poison removed they would just become food .

Comment by Christa on August 1, 2019 at 7:46

Good report Roger, unless everyone puts fruit-fly traps in their yard, I feel we are losing the battle.  Surprised to hear that they are travelling south, I thought the cold might stop them, but then our temperatures are not as they used to be..  I always thought that placing the traps on the fence line  was the done thing, and thus stopping them from reaching your fruit. Better still, offering a few traps to your neighbours was better for keeping them away from your own yard.  It would be advantageous to put out a list of fruit fly resistant plants. 

Maybe I will look and try the fruition traps as well and see if it makes a difference. Nets will still be used though.

Comment by Andrew Cumberland on July 21, 2019 at 21:49

Thanks Roger. 

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