Early in 2021, Queensland Fruit Fly (QFF) was found by one of our members in the Ballarat
area for the first time. Since then, Ballarat Permaculture Guild (BPG) has been working on a
community-based strategy to help reduce the spread of QFF in our region.
Queensland Fruit Fly is a serious pest in fruit and fruiting vegetables, such as tomatoes and
capsicums. Without action, our backyard and community gardeners, as well as commercial
growers, could face serious crop losses.
You can join us in the fight against QFF in one of four ways:
- Join the monitoring team. This involves hosting and checking a QFF trap in your backyard, farm, community garden or a nearby wild fruit tree. Email reminders to check the trap will be sent weekly, and you just need to check the trap and reply with the result. Benefits of being involved are helping slow the spread of QFF in Ballarat, access to traps at bulk-buy pricing (about half retail cost), and data sharing with the community so you not only get feedback from your own trap, but also receive email alerts if QFF is found nearby, so you can protect your crops before you see QFF yourself. The cost is $10 per trap, with a discount code (for subsidized $8 pricing) available for BPG financial members. For suburban blocks, one trap is ample. For rural blocks, up to five traps per hectare can be installed if you wish. Traps will be distributed from a stall at the Ballarat Farmers Market on October 9th, Covid restrictions permitting, otherwise at the first market open to general stallholders. (An email notification will be sent.) More detailed information will be provided on sign-up and at the stall.
- Join the education team. This involves learning about QFF, its breeding cycle, and prevention and treatment strategies, and then helping educate members of the public about measures they can take to keep Ballarat fruit fly-free. Initially this will be primarily through a stall at the Ballarat Farmers Market, but later may involve other markets, special events, school and club visits, and so on. We hope to sign up enough volunteers to allow for a rostered time commitment of approximately three hours per month for each volunteer.
- Join the organizing team, and bring your own ideas to the project.
- If you would like to help but don’t have time to volunteer, you can also make a donation to Ballarat Permaculture Guild to help fund the program.
Further information about the program is available from [email protected]. If you’d like to join us, please sign up below: