The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) hereby provides notice of the detection of male specimens of Bactrocera invadens in the Witvlag and Tshidzini areas (Vhembe district municipality) of the Limpopo province on 18 September 2012 and 18 October 2012 respectively. The Witvlag area is approximately 90km South of the Zimbabwe border and 10 km North of Louis Trichardt. The Tshidzini area is approximately 55km South of the Zimbabwe border and 80km Northeast of Louis Trichardt. The identifications have been confirmed by an internationally recognised fruit fly taxonomist.
The NPPO of South Africa initiated delimiting surveys in the above areas after the first detections and phytosanitary actions were implemented with immediate effect to prevent the movement of fruit from the area under quarantine. Actions to eradicate this pest from this area commenced after the detection of a second adult fruit fly in each of the affected areas. The South African National exotic fruit fly surveillance project started in 2006.
A network of fruit fly traps was deployed as an early warning system to detect exotic fruit flies. Traps were placed in production areas, alongside road transects at ports of entry and in urban areas close to municipal garbage dumps, hotels, sports grounds and other strategic places countrywide. Since the establishment of Bactrocera invadens in northern Namibia, northern Botswana and Mozambique as well as in the territories of several other African trading partners, surveillance has been intensified especially adjacent to the northern borders of South Africa.
The fruit industry was recognized as a key role player to assist with the surveillance. Subsequently Citrus Research International (CRI), Citrus Growersâ€™ Association (CGA), Deciduous Fruit Producers Trust (DFPT/ Hortgro), South African Table Grape Industry (SATI) and the Subtropical Growers Association became part of the official national exotic fruit fly detection survey. In 2010 and 2011, Bactrocera invadens was detected in the northern parts of South Africa. In both years, B. invadens was successfully eradicated.