A fourth Queensland fruit fly has been found in Auckland but Biosecurity NZ says it is not established here.
Biosecurity New Zealand spokesperson Catherine Duthie said there was no evidence to suggest an established Queensland fruit fly population had been found.
“The proximity of these three detections in Northcote as well as the timing would indicate they are possibly from the same source,” Dr Duthie said.
“We have investigated several hundred kilos of fruit collected in the area. “We dissected this looking for eggs and larvae, and we have found no evidence of a population to date.” . . .
Fruit flies might be small but the impact on our horticulture should they infest orchards would be huge.
So what’s to be done? Federated Farmers’ president Katie Milne has a good suggestion – copying the Australian example of a compulsory video on incoming flights:
The safety video depicts people trying to use everyday excuses to get past Australian border officials with fish, wooden objects, plants and other material hidden in their luggage.
“This video is an example of what is needed at every New Zealand point of entry,” Federated Farmers national president Katie Milne says.
Their new mandatory passenger announcement is engaging, vibrant and available in written and audio formats in 14 languages.
It is a legal requirement under Australian law for the video to be shown. . .
If you look around when the announcement on biosecurity is made before planes from overseas start their descent, you’ll see few people are concentrating. It’s not always easy to hear what’s being said, even for native speakers of English let alone those for whom it’s a second language or don’t understand it at all.
A video clearly giving the message about what can and can’t be brought in, and why, would be much better than the current spoken announcement.
Our borders are vulnerable which puts agriculture and horticulture at risk.
An engaging video would be a useful tool for the biosecurity tool box.