This investment will further develop mass trapping methods as a tool to assist in the control of Queensland fruit fly, while evaluating the effectiveness of trapping at decreasing fly populations for table grape growers. This research will ultimately improve area wide management programs for the pest and contribute to continued market access by delivering best practice guidelines for growers. It aligns closely with the current levy-funded program Building capacity in area wide integrated pest management for Qfly in table grapes (TG18001), as well as a state-funded project in Victoria that focuses on Queensland fruit fly mass trapping in stone and pome fruits.
The project team will commence on-farm trials to confirm trap efficacy in table grapes, with a focus on assessing optimal trap placement in and around the crop as well as in nearby host sources and refuges. This will contribute to designing a table grape-specific mass trapping strategy that growers can implement. Following that, on-farm mass trapping programs will be initiated to evaluate the effectiveness of this strategy at decreasing fruit fly populations in and around selected commercial vineyards, and in reducing pre-harvest fruit fly damage to grapes.
Three grower workshops will be held as a way to assess current perceptions and knowledge of mass trapping in the management of fruit flies and to discuss the potential for integrating mass trapping with integrated pest management and current area wide management approaches. This will inform the production of best practice guidelines for growers. On-farm field walks will also be held as a practical means of demonstrating how mass trapping works and its potential impact to growers, consultants and industry stakeholders.