In the last Bulletin we talked about the need to increase Psa protective sprays in line with the seasonal weather changes.
This has become even more pertinent following the bad, wet and windy weather we’ve recently had and news out of Northern Italy that Psa infection in Italy this spring is higher than previous years.
After a very wet autumn, the Italians have had a relatively mild winter and dry spring. It’s thought that the extensive rain last autumn has led to the outbreak they’re seeing now which is affecting Hayward in particular. Verona, Piedmont and Emilia Romagna are also heavily infected with significant secondary symptoms.
There’s a strong chance we could see the same symptoms here in New Zealand next spring if growers don’t take the right action now. To help protect their orchards, growers need to:
• apply a copper spray following the recent wet windy weather (ensure a suitable time window before harvest) to protect new wounds and rebuild protective cover across vines as soon as possible,
• ensure a copper Actigard spray is applied immediately after harvest to help prevent Psa entering vines through harvest wounds and leaf scars,
• look at a winter copper programme of five full rate copper sprays between harvest and bud break. Consider both weather and orchard activities when planning these sprays.
Post-harvest, Actigard can be tank mixed with copper and is most effective when applied to leaves that are still in good condition. It should not be applied to vines that have been waterlogged for an extended period. Vines should be given four to five days to recover from the recent heavy downpours before application.
For more information, refer to KVH's Psa-V Best Practice Guide.
Any growers concerned they may not be achieving the expected levels of Psa control from copper applications at label rates should contact KVH on 0800 665 825 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sterile Queensland fruit flies are being imported over the next few months for use in a research project to identify new attractants that may have the potential to improve surveillance and response for this unwanted pest.
As part of a long-term project to learn more about odour attractants, the flies are being used within a containment facility at Plant and Food Research to identify firstly any odours that flies can smell, and secondly, any behavioural activity they then demonstrate – such as flight towards odours. This work will allow scientists to then identify which compounds have the most potential to improve current surveillance and response systems.
Over 50 odours have so far been identified that female and / or male flies can detect and combinations of these will be trialled to determine flies response to any of these, or combinations of these, better than the existing attractants.
Read more about the ongoing research project in the Fruit Fly section of the KVH website.
The latest KVH risk update for fruit fly has been published.
Using latest data from the Ministry for Primary Industries the update includes border information for March 2017 and updated surveillance trap numbers.
The risk period for fruit fly stretches until June so please do note the reminders we’ve included about what to look out for and what to do if you suspect you have found any kind of fruit fly.
KVH continues to work with the science community and agrichemical company experts to better understand copper resistance in Psa.
A science workshop was held last week where presentations on the latest research from Otago University, Plant and Food and Massey University were discussed.
Genome sequencing of Psa samples collected from a range of regions carried out by Otago University has identified two different genome altering mechanisms (Plasmids and ICE) capable of conferring copper resistance into Psa bacteria. These Plasmids and ICE mechanisms are present in other bacteria readily found in the orchard environment and can transfer from these other bacteria to Psa.
We are still working with the scientist to better understand what these latest finding mean when it comes to Psa control on orchards with copper over the longer term, but importantly there is no evidence that the application of copper is resulting in this situation.
Another workshop is scheduled to take place in May to ensure in light of this information we are recommending the best control programmes to recommend to growers.
As a result of these latest findings KVH will be reviewing movement control Protocols for orchards that are known to have these forms of Psa. However other forms of Psa that are deemed a risk to the industry (i.e. mutations conferring Streptomycin resistance, other forms of Cu resistance and non-New Zealand forms of Psa) will continue to be restricted under existing protocols for both orchards and nurseries.
KVH and NZKGI are making joint submissions to The Bay of Plenty Regional Council and Northland Regional Council on the pest management plans each council is reviewing.
A reminder that individual submissions to both are welcomed so do take the opportunity to have your say on any areas of interest. The plans cover management of a range of pests including wild kiwifruit and moth plant.
We will also publish our submissions on the KVH website for you to view.
The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Kiwifruit Vine Health will be held Thursday 24 August 2017.
Growers will receive their AGM packs in the mail during the first week of August. These will include the Chairman’s Report, 2016 KVH audited financial statements and proposed budget for the 2018/2019 financial year. Also included will be a recommendation of the rate of the NPMP & Biosecurity Levy for the 2018 year, any proposed rule changes, Explanation of Resolutions and your voting paper.
Date: Thursday 24 August 2017
Location: Suite 1, ASB Arena, Truman Lane, Mount Maunganui
A July 2017 target has been set for completion of the Operational Agreement, under GIA, to prepare for and respond to a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMB) incursion.
KVH is part of the group that has been set up to lead the development of the agreement, alongside MPI and other horticulture industry sector groups.
This agreement follows on from another one signed by KVH in mid-March to help reduce the damaging impacts of the four most common biosecurity threats to the kiwifruit and kiwiberry sectors: Ceratocystis fimbriata, Verticillium wilt, Psa-non New Zealand strains and Invasive Phytophthoras.
The first agreement of its kind was the multi-sector agreement for the management of fruit fly in New Zealand which KVH signed in May 2014.
What is the GIA? It’s a partnership between government and industry for improving New Zealand’s biosecurity. Industry organisations (such as KVH on behalf of kiwifruit) and the Ministry for Primary Industries, sign a Deed that formally establishes a biosecurity partnership. Deed Signatories negotiate and agree the priority pests and diseases of most concern to them and agree actions to minimise the risk and impact of an incursion, prepare for and manage a response if an incursion occurs, and cost sharing.
In recent issues of the Bulletin we’ve outlined a number of initiatives KVH is involved in to improve readiness for Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB).
These initiatives have been focused on keeping the pest out, raising public awareness so that we detect any arrivals, developing an eradication approach, working towards a pre-emptive approval for the release of a biocontrol agent and developing an Operational Agreement for BMSB under GIA so that horticultural industries agree on decision making and cost sharing for this pest.
These activities are all still continuing across the horticultural sector, however we are also undertaking initiatives specific to the kiwifruit sector.
KVH has presented to industry forums to identify and work through some of the high level challenges and decisions we may face as a sector. These forums include the NZKGI Executive and forum, Industry Advisory Council (IAC), Industry Supply Group (ISG), and supply groups such as G4.
KVH is also working with Zespri to develop on-orchard management strategies for this pest should it establish, to identify the best control approach and if needed implement research to support this. KVH and Zespri are holding a small technical workshop to progress this in early May and are leveraging off the experience of Northern Hemisphere horticultural sectors and research initiatives.
We’ve made a change to our website to make it easier and quicker for growers to find useful information.
There is now a section under the ‘Growers’ tab called ‘Grower resources’ where we list links to all the most topical documents, videos, and news items on our site that growers might need at any given time.
You can now simply to go to this resources page instead of having to search across different pages and sections to find things (the easy shortcut to get there is www.kvh.org.nz/resources).
We’ll regularly update the page so that the items on it are always the ones you most want and need.
Late last week MPI temporarily suspended importation of rockmelon and honeydew melon from Australia because of the detection of live insects on several recent consignments.
Although none of the insects found were fruit flies, it does indicate there could possibly be an issue with the post-harvest treatment (dimethoate) that is used in the management of risk from fruit flies.
KVH fully supports the precautionary measure MPI has taken – protecting New Zealand from fruit flies is of the highest importance. There is a chance that consumer supply of the melon is affected over the next couple of weeks but we believe this to be a small inconvenience compared to a fruit fly incursion that could disrupt trade and result in large economic losses for exporters.
We were also pleased to see that on Tuesday MPI announced their x-ray screening had found a passenger’s bag full of undeclared fruit and vegetables at Christchurch airport.
The traveller was flying from Sydney over Easter weekend and admitted she was trying to smuggle the food into New Zealand. MPI and Immigration New Zealand worked together and the passenger was denied entry into the country – a strong stance, fully supported by KVH and one that shows our border systems are working and that Government is serious about biosecurity. Any one of the smuggled items could have been carrying unwanted pest threats that could have a devastating impact and KVH believes the right action was taken.
Motel cleaners hailed as horticultural heroes was the headline for several stories in New Zealand and Australian media recently. The articles detailed finds of BMSB earlier this year and highlighted the importance of the bugs being spotted and reported to MPI.
Stories like these continue to raise the profile of not only our most unwanted pests but also the need for everyone to be on the lookout and know what to do if they find an anything unusual.
Here at KVH our key message is to ‘catch it, snap it, report it’ – no matter how unsure people are about what they’ve found - and we hope to see more positive news media like this championing the same message.