Moira Shire Council and Berrigan Shire Council are partnering with the Cobram and District Fruit Growers Association to launch a community awareness campaign to combat the threat of Queensland Fruit Fly (QFF) in the region.
"But the problem has much greater consequences for our region. From backyards to orchards we have the climate, the soils, the water and the knowledge to grow some of the best and cleanest fruit and vegetables in the world. But we could lose it all if we don’t work together to get on top of the Queensland Fruit Fly problem."
"As an industry we are calling on the local community to partner with us to make sure we all look after our patch," said Mr Siciliano
Moira Shire Mayor Marie Martin said over coming weeks a range initiatives will be rolled out to assist local communities on both sides of the River prepare their gardens.
"No flies on us! is a very appropriate Australian expression that describes someone who is intelligent and able to think quickly. We are calling on our local community to do just that and help us combat the QFF problem," said Mayor Martin.
"The awareness campaign will provide our local communities with information about the wide range of fruits and vegetables that are vulnerable to fruit fly, and some of the management options residents can use to reduce the risk and manage the problem."
QFF activity usually increases in spring as the weather gets warmer, but it’s not limited to a particular season.
"For example citrus trees can host QFF all year round so it’s important all of us understand, prepare and manage our gardens," Mayor Martin said.
Berrigan Shire Councillor John Bruce said the awareness campaign was just one way Councils were responding to the QFF risk.
"We are working with the relevant state departments to assist them identify and respond to abandoned trees and orchards, we are reviewing the trees we plant in parks and along streets and our community awareness campaign will extend to a large scale trapping and monitoring program as we get closer to the risk period," Cr Bruce said.
"We are calling on the community to help too. Some options are as simple as ensuring we pick fruit as it ripens while other options include nets, bags and sleeves to physically stop female QFFs from reaching the fruit. And the ultimate step is to remove unwanted or unmanageable host plants from your garden," Cr Bruce said.