Using latest data from the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) we’ve produced a risk update for fruit fly. The update includes interception data for the calendar year and information about the surveillance programme in place. Read the update here (it’s also available to download anytime from the KVH website).
The Queensland Fruit Fly risk period stretches until June so we’ve also included important reminders about what to look out for and what to do if you suspect you’ve found this unwanted pest.
Horticulture New Zealand hosted a workshop to improve industry understanding of the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) last Thursday.
Run at the end of the Horticulture Industry Forum in Wellington, KVH were invited to take part along with other industry stakeholders.
The workshop was based on a fictional find of a bug in the Gisborne region and included a simulation, the basis for a response, and how the industry can support a response. There will be a round-up of the key learnings put together for everyone to review but one that was highlighted right from the outset was the importance of getting community support and buy-in from the start.
Groups across the industry – HortNZ, KVH, Pipfruit New Zealand, NZ Wine, and NZ Avocadoes – are working together to develop best practice BMSB risk management expectations and guidelines to support importers and distributors of farm and orchard equipment and supplies from high-risk BMSB countries, such as tractors from Italy.
KVH is also planning a further exercise scenario with Zespri over the coming weeks to ensure there are robust plans in place for quickly getting information to and from growers in the event of a BMSB find.
Communications campaigns to get information out to the public continue to take place. There has been fantastic uptake of the MPI video about BMSB featuring Ruud, the bug man (watch below). In just over a month the video has been viewed on Facebook more than 160 thousand times and has reached just over 330,000 people through their Facebook pages – if you haven’t already viewed or shared it with colleagues, family and friends please do.
Two further videos were also developed last week targeting travellers and those who receive mail. These are quick, short animated videos encouraging and reminding people to check their bags and parcels. Released over the weekend they are already proving popular and help to spread the message about being on the lookout for this serious threat.
Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy said on Wednesday that various activities – like the ones above – to prevent the establishment of BMSB have ramped up over summer and helped raise public awareness of this serious threat.
“Work underway includes detector dog training, research on the effectiveness of lures, obtaining approval for chemical sprays and public awareness advertising and campaigns.”
“There is also mandatory treatments of vehicle and machinery pathways, and targeted verification inspections on sea containers. MPI will soon be visiting European exporters of high risk cargo and working with them to mitigate these risks.”
KVH continues to work closely with MPI as part of the GIA on biosecurity and in the last Bulletin published an update (including data) on all pre-border, border and post-border interventions to manage BMSB risk.
Kiwifruit Vine Health Incorporated and the KVH Foundation Incorporated will now operate as one entity under the Government Industry Agreement (GIA).
The Minister for Primary Industries approved the application late March, which confirms and completes the legal requirements of moving to a single legal entity - Kiwifruit Vine Health Incorporated - to represent the kiwifruit and kiwiberry sectors from 1 April.
Further information will be presented at the KVH AGM in July to liquidate the former KVH Foundation.
KVH is pleased to announce two more nurseries have joined the Kiwifruit Plant Certification Scheme this week (KPCS).
Brimat Nursery and Robinwood, both in Pongakawa have met the requirements to sell KPCS “within region” certified plants to growers in the Te Puke region.
There are now 17 nurseries who are part of the scheme and quite a few more are expected to meet the testing and auditing requirements in the next few months.
Growers are reminded that KVH movement controls must be observed when ordering kiwifruit plants form nurseries.
For a list of nurseries and their KPCS status, and to find out more about requirements of the KPCS, click here.
The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) continues to offer a $1,000 reward to Bay of Plenty residents who report sightings of an aggressive pest bird, the red-vented bulbul.
MPI is working in partnership with the Department of Conservation and local authorities to eradicate the bird, an introduced pest that’s renowned for the damage it inflicts on fruit and vegetable crops.
With our extensive kiwifruit industry and other horticultural crops, this is not a bird we want in the Bay of Plenty.
A single red vented bulbul was found and removed near Te Puke last year and the person who reported it received the reward – which is $1,000 for information that leads directly to a successful removal by a member of the MPI response team.
If you think you’ve seen a red-vented bulbul, please report the sighting to MPI on 0800 80 99 66 with an indication of location as well as a photo if possible.
Red-vented bulbuls are a medium-sized bird around the size of a starling (20 cm in length – body and tail). They are generally dark brown/grey coloured with a lighter chest and rump, a small crest (upstanding feathers) on their head, and significantly, a very distinctive crimson-red patch of feathers beneath their tail.
In recent years, small populations of the bird have been eradicated from areas in Auckland. Although they are established in Australia and on some Pacific islands, they are not likely to have flown to New Zealand but it's possible they have stowed away on large ocean-going vessels.
Two regional councils are reviewing their Regional Pest Management Plans and you can help shape their outcomes.
The plans set out how pests are to be managed within each council’s respective region, and how management will be funded.
The Bay of Plenty Regional Council (BOPRC) has developed a discussion document to gain feedback on the management of a range of pests including wild kiwifruit and moth plant. Northland Regional Council (NRC) is also asking for public feedback on their proposed Northland Regional Pest and Marine Pathway Management Plan.
Individual submissions are welcomed so please do have your say on any areas you’re particularly interested in. KVH and NZKGI will be making joint submissions to both councils providing comment on their proposed changes and how new pest management challenges could be addressed.
The submission period for the BOPRC closes Monday 1 May 2017 and submissions for the NRC need to be in by Friday 21 April 2017.
Autumn is a high risk period for Psa as cooler, wetter weather conditions favour multiplication and spread of disease.
The Psa-V risk model showed heightened Psa risk for most growing regions over the past week and looking forward risk continues to be moderate in areas such as the Waikato, Northland and parts of the Bay of Plenty (see image above - risk profile from the Karapiro weather station in the Waikato).
Growers should step up protection in line with these seasonal changes and individual orchard risk. For those harvesting later in the season applying a copper spray, when weather and ground conditions allow, will begin to rebuild protective cover across vines. A reminder that leaf spots can provide a source of inoculum so should be considered when making decisions on spray applications.
Immediately following harvest, growers should be getting copper spray programmes underway to help prevent Psa entering their vines through harvest wounds and leaf scars.
Incorporation of Actigard into a post-harvest programme will reduce the likelihood of disease symptoms appearing the following spring. Actigard can be tank mixed with copper and is most effective when applied to leaves that are still in good condition. Extreme care must be taken to avoid spray drift onto unharvested blocks. After spraying Actigard ensure that spray tanks, lines and nozzles are cleaned thoroughly before spraying other products on unharvested fruit.
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 email@example.com.
Myrtle rust has been detected in pohutukawa trees on Raoul Island and MPI is working with the Department of Conservation and industry groups to manage its spread.
Myrtle rust is a fungal infection that can travel long distances in the wind and attacks plants of the myrtaceae family. It could affect iconic New Zealand plants like pohutukawa, kanuka, manuka and rata, as well as commercially-grown species such as eucalyptus, guava and feijoa.
Although myrtle rust has not been detected on mainland New Zealand, it’s important – and a timely reminder for growers – to look out for symptoms on their native myrtaceae trees. Look for:
• bright yellow powdery eruptions appearing on the underside of the leaf (young infection)
• bright yellow powdery eruptions on both sides of the leaf (mature infection)
• brown/grey rust pustules (older spores) can appear on older lesions
• leaves may become buckled or twisted and die off.
If you see any of these symptoms or anything else unusual report it to MPI on 0800 80 99 66.
A Myrtle rust fact sheet is also available on the MPI website.