Aussie pest found in New Zealand
The fly, which poses a potential threat to New Zealand’s horticultural industry, was collected from a surveillance trap on Tuesday and the Ministry for Primary Industries is investigating the find.
MPI deputy director general compliance and response Andrew Coleman says field teams are setting additional traps to see if there are other fruit flies in the area.
“It is vital to find out if the insect is a solitary find or if there is a wider population in Whangarei,” he said.
“This insect is an unwanted and notifiable organism that could have serious consequences for New Zealand’s horticultural industry. It can damage a wide range of fruit and vegetables.”
MPI is working closely with international partners and the horticultural industry to minimise the risk to New Zealand growers and exporters.
A controlled area will be in place, restricting the movement of fruit and vegetables out of the area.
The most likely way fruit flies arrive in New Zealand is in fresh fruit and vegetables.
Queensland fruit fly has been found on three previous occasions: in Whangarei in 1995 and in Auckland in 1996 and 2012.