Tau fly media update - 23 January 2016

Media contact: MPI media phone
Telephone: 029 894 0328

It’s been a busy time for MPI and AQ staff since they swung in to action following the find of a single male Tau fly on Thursday afternoon (21 January).

“MPI is working to find out if there are more Tau flies out there. Within 48 hours of the detection our teams will have set out 95 additional traps in the A Zone, the 200m area directly around where the fly was found in Manurewa,” said MPI’s Manager Surveillance and Incursion Investigation, Brendan Gould.

The find of this single fly demonstrates how well MPI’s lure-based surveillance trapping network is working. The network involves some 7,600 traps set nationwide which are checked regularly.

Controls are in place to restrict the movement of some fruit/vegetables outside of a defined circular area extending 1.5km from where the fly was trapped.

“These flies like to feed on pumpkins, melons, cucumbers, capsicum, zucchini, beans, mangoes, eggplant, papaya and passionfruit. A full list of affected fruit and vegetables is available on MPI’s website. We’re asking people in the area to not move these off their property except to put them in the disposal bins provided.

“Tomorrow (Sunday 24 January) the Farmers Market, Cnr Northcrest Way and Maich Rd, Manurewa will be running as usual but there will be restrictions in place on the movement of fruit and veg that the Tau fly feeds on. The public are asked to look out for information that will be available at the market and MPI and AQ staff will also be there to provide advice.”

“We appreciate that restrictions can be inconvenient but public support is vital to success and we’ve always had terrific community buy-in,” said Mr Gould.

If you think you might have seen a Tau fly in your area, please call the Ministry for Primary Industries helpline on 0800 80 99 66.

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