|PAPUA NEW GUINEA (PNG)|
|Wednesday, 16 January 2013 08:02|
Papua New Guinea (PNG) holds the world record for fruit fly species diversity. In his monograph, Drew (1989) characterized and illustrated 180 species that occur in PNG. The major challenge of surveying PNG fruit flies was tackled by the PNG Government in 1992 when an entomologist, based at Laloki Research Station near Port Moresby, was hired to survey fruit flies in the Central Province and monitor entry of fruit flies into PNG along the Irian Jaya border, with support from Northern Australia Quarantine Survey (NAQS).
Fruit fly work supported by the FAO/AusAID/UNDP/SPC Project RAS/97/331 "Regional Management of Fruit Flies in the Pacific" was initiated in PNG in May 1997. A parallel and complementary project under the Australian Centre for International Agriculture Research (ACIAR Project CS2/96/225 "Identification, biology, management and quarantine systems for fruit flies in PNG"), designed to run concurrently with RMFFP, was initiated with a delay in June 1998. The activities of the two Projects are carried out jointly under a common umbrella referred to as the PNG Fruit Fly Project (PNGFFP).
The PNG Fruit Fly Project is coordinated by the PNG National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI). There is also close collaboration with PNG Department of Agriculture and Livestock (DAL), National Agriculture Quarantine Inspection Authority (NAQIA), Fresh Produce Development Company (FPDC), Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC), Coffee Research Institute (CRI), and the Provincial governments by the Divisions of Primary Industries (DPI).
Activities are carried out at three Regional Centres, each with a fruit fly laboratory: Wet Lowlands Island Agricultural Experiment Station (LAES) in Kerevat, East New Britain, Wet Lowlands Mainland Agricultural Experiment Station in Bubia, Morobe Province, and Dry Lowlands Mainland Agricultural Experiment Station in Laloki, Central Province. Laboratory facilities were renovated with funding from RMFFP and equipped by RMFFP and the ACIAR Project. At each Centre, there are one junior scientific officer (JSO), one technician and one or two casual helpers. The JSO positions are funded by RMFFP, the technician positions by ACIAR and the casuals by NARI. The RMFFP has also funded a United Nations Volunteer (UNV), who has worked at LAES Kerevat from 1997 to 1999. For further information, please contact the senior entomologist who coordinates the Project:
Mr. Sim Sar, Entomologist, National Agricultural Research Institute
FRUIT FLY SPECIES: PNG has an exceptionally rich fruit fly fauna. Drew (1989) cited and described 180 species, based on past survey work. Many previously undescribed species are being discovered with the PNG Fruit Fly Project. As of early 2001, the number of described species is 188 and the number of confirmed new species awaiting description is estimated as 50-60. A detailed list and up to date distribution of PNG species covering individual provinces has been compiled on a separate page. The list is in PDF format and can be read with Adobe Acrobat Reader program, which can be obtained for free from the Adobe site: http://www.adobe.com
Eighteen fruit fly species have been bred from edible fruits in PNG, as shown on the following table:
ECONOMIC IMPORTANCE OF FRUIT FLIES: Damage assessment data in PNG are extensive. A few examples of damage on important hosts are as follows:
ACHIEVEMENTS: Major achievements by the PNG Fruit Fly Project so far are:
Initial establishment: 1. Establishment of three fruit fly research regional centers: in Kerevat (East New Britain), Bubia (Morobe) and Laloki (Port Moresby). 2. Available buildings upgraded and equipped into fruit fly research facilities (office, fly colony room, screen house for fruit sample holding) in Kerevat and Bubia. 3. Training on fruit fly research for five entomologists, four technicians and four casuals.
Trapping: 4. There are permanent trapping sites for quarantine surveillance in 14 PNG provinces. 5. Snap shot surveys of fruit flies in West New Britain, New Ireland, Lihir, Manus, Bougainville, Madang, East Sepik, West Sepik, Western Province, Milne Bay and the Highlands. 6. Most trapped samples sorted by the ACIAR Project team at Griffith University in Brisbane (Australia), and samples from 3-6 sites sorted by national staff at each research station. 7. Overall, 99 described species collected by trapping since 1997 (out of 180 known in PNG), plus at least 27 new species. 8. The distribution of pest species is better known. Asian papaya fruit fly is widespread over all mainland PNG, even in the Highlands, but are absent from the Island Provinces. Melon fly is widespread over most PNG but is absent from Manus. Banana fruit fly is present on the mainland and in East New Britain.
Host fruit surveying: 9. Field collection of samples of edible and wild fruits set up in bulk in general host surveying. 14-15 pest fruit fly species reared from commercial/edible fruits. Parasitoids frequently recovered but parasitism rarely above 10-15%. Three parasitoid species in East New Britain. 10. Damage assessments done by setting up individually fruits. Species assessed are: banana, bittergourd, breadfruit, carambola, cashew, Garcinia xanthochymus, guava, mandarin, mango, orange, papaya, Polynesian chestnut and tropical almond. 11. Surveillance against Asian papaya fruit fly on coffee in the Highlands. No infested coffee berries recorded so far.
Data management: 12. Large reference collections of fruit flies developed at Kerevat, Bubia, Laloki and Brisbane. 13. Trapping and host surveying data recorded on Excel spreadsheets at each research station, and trapping data sorted at Griffith University in Brisbane organized into a Microsoft Access database.
Control: 14. Protein bait spraying tested at each of the three centres, in carambola or guava orchards. 15. Bagging with newspaper bags tested on guava with convincing results, and bagging promoted and demonstrated as an inexpensive control method in PNG. 16. Regular demonstrations of bagging and protein bait spraying to farmers and children during station visits, open days and school visits. The fruit fly control farmer demonstration trial for vegetable farmers is currently conducted in a small holder farm where the farmer is testing with the Agricultural Research staff in Laloki Research NARI station new technologies for fruit fly control. This trial is carried out in collaboration with the National Quarantine service (NAQIA).
Laboratory colonies: 17. Establishment of strong and stable laboratory colonies of B. frauenfeldi in Kerevat and colonies of B. cucurbitae and B. papayae in Bubia and B. musae in Laloki. Heat tolerance research on eggs and larvae will soon commence in each Centre.
Training, publications: 18. Several meetings and planning workshops and one technical training involving the whole project team and representatives from DAL, NARI, NAQIA, FPDC etc. One training course conducted in August, 1999. 19. Publication of a pest advisory leaflet on mango fly in Tok Pisin, five issues of a newsletter, a guide to fruit fly survey methods, a radio show on fruit flies in Tok Pisin in five parts, several display posters on fruit fly monitoring and control, three comprehensive technical reports, two work plan meeting reports and six snap shot survey reports. 20. NARI Fruit Fly personnel, Ms.Anna.Kawi was on a two weeks attachment in Fiji with SPC and Koronivia Research Station studying laboratory rearing of fruit flies, host surveys, surveillance programs and Fiji's export system.
Heat Treatments and export markets: 21. Work on Heat Tolerance Testing started for B. frauenfeldi in February 2003. This work is continuing at the Bubia Research Station for the National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) in Lae. This study will provide the basis of the treatment parameters for Heat. A research program on heat tolerance studies for all the economic fruit fly species in PNG has been developed. This program will be carried out in the next three years in two centres, Bubia and Kilakila Research Stations in PNG. This study will provide the basis of the quarantine treatment parameters using heat.
STATUS OF QUARANTINE SURVEILLANCE (as of October 2007): There are 67 trapping sites, with one Cue-lure and one methyl eugenol trap, in 15 provinces: Western (7 sites), Central (2), Oro (7), Milne Bay (8), Morobe (3), Madang (3), East Sepik (2), West Sepik (2), Eastern Highlands (5), Simbu (3), Western Highlands (5), West New Britain (2), East New Britain (8), New Ireland (2), Manus (0), Bougainville (8). Samples of the following commodities are regularly collected for quarantine surveillance: guava, mango, papaya, avocado, banana, soursop, carambola, tropical almond, Tahitian chestnut, orange, mandarin, lemon, Malay apple, chilli, eggplant, cucumber, bittergourd, pumpkin, melon. All trapping and host fruit survey data are compiled on Excel spreadsheets. There are fruit fly posters and quarantine bins at the Port Moresby airport. There is a quarantine awareness program running on the radio and in schools.
Download Pest Advisory Leaflet on Melon Fly in English (192 Kb)