A regional program (TCProject RAF 5062) of four years duration, financed by IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency), and dealing with fruit flies started at the beginning of 2012. A first workshop bringing together the national coordinators of the program was organized in Mauritius from February 13rd to 15th 2012. The local organizer was the Entomology Division of the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security of Mauritius.
The objectives of this program are to reinforce the regional cooperation in order to :
- Prevent the introduction of exotic fruit fly species (and particularly Bactrocera invadens)
- Improve the management of populations of existing species through the exchange of information, expertise and sharing of regional resources.
Apart from the countries of the Indian Ocean Commission (Madagascar, Seychelles and Mauritius,as the Comoros are not eligible for funding from IAEA), some East African countries (Mozambique and Tanzania) are also partners. South Africa was also represented at this workshop, as an observer country. France (La Réunion) was also represented, through the presence of scientists from Cirad.
The workshop was divided into 3 sessions:
- A presentation of the situation of fruit flies (damaging fruit or vegetable crops) of economic importance in each of the participating countries.
- The redaction of a Memorandum of Understanding between the partners of the program
- And finally the planning and agreement on the budget ofthe different activities of the program.
A visit to the Entomology Laboratory and to the fruit fly mass–rearing unit was proposed by the Entomology Division ofthe Ministry of Agro-industry and Food Security of Mauritius. This was a good opportunity to see the progress achieved in the mass-rearing of Bactrocera cucurbitae and Bactrocera zonata towards the implementation of IPM programs, including the use of Sterile Insect Technique (SIT).
On the afternoon of Monday February13th, the opening ceremony of the workshop was combined with the official opening of phase 2 of the action program against the Melon fly, in the presence of the Minister of Agro-industry and Food Security, the Hon. Satya Veyash Faugoo.
Most of the actions planned within the program are of direct interest to the actors of the regional network on plant protection (e-PRPV). They include for example the organization of training courses, of scientific exchanges and also aim to increase the participation of partners in international congresses. Also, the production of scientific tools (guides, documents, DVD, posters…) is planned.
Main actions within the program
Two main actions are planned for 2012 :
- A training course on the taxonomy of Tephritidae and on the surveillance and detection trapping networks. It will be organized from November 26th to 30th 2012 at CIRAD Réunion.
- 2nd International Congress of the TEAM Network (« Tephritid Workers of Europe, Africa and the Middle East ») :« Biological Invasions by Tephritidae - Ecological and economic Impacts». This congress will take place from July 3rd au 6th, 2012 in Crete (Greece). The participation of 5 representatives of partner countries will be financed by the program.
Other actions are already programmed for the coming years :
- Workshop on the preparation of emergency action plans against exotic fruit fly species. Mauritius, early 2013,
- Training course on Pest Risk Analysis, quarantine and international rules for phytosanitary measures. Mozambique, end 2013,
- Second Workshop of regional coordination to evaluate the progress and plan future activities. Seychelles, early 2014,
- Training course on population suppression methods against fruit flies (MAT, BAT, SIT…), Mauritius, end 2013,
- International Symposium on Fruit Flies of Economic Importance. Thaïland, April 20th-25th,2014.
Finally, some reference tools of regional interest will be produced :
- Setting up of a reference collection of all fruit fly species present in the countries in the region ; documents for an easy identification of species,
- Edition of an updated version of the « Manual for quarantine inspection procedures», enlarging it to other partner countries within the Indian Ocean Commission
- Edition of an updated version of the « Guide of host-plants of fruit flies in the south-western Indian Ocean », enlarging it to other partner countries within the Indian Ocean Commission.
This workshop also allowed the team from La Réunion to set up a calendar for some actions planned within the-PRPVon the use of biological control against B. zonata and B. cucurbitae in Mauritius, through acclimatization of parasitoid species : Cirad should supply the two parasitoïds of Tephritidae (Fopius arisanus and Psyttalia fletcheri) to the Entomology Division in Mauritius. Forthat purpose, an official letter of request and an importation authorization will soon be transmitted by our Maurician colleagues. For this introduction, planned in April-May, a short field expedition to Mauritius will be undertaken by Coline BRUNET and Jim PAYET (Cirad), allowing them to train Mauritian colleagues in rearing methods for the two parasitoid species.
List of the participants to the workshop :
- Shradanand PERMALLOO, Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security, Entomology Division
- Preeaduth SOOKAR, Ministry of Agro-Industry and Food Security, Entomology Division (ainsi que toute l’équipe de la Division Entomologie)
- Randy STRAVENS, Ministry of Agriculture, Plant Protection Section
- Claudine RAOELIJAONA, Ministère de l’Agriculture, Service de la Protection des Végétaux
- Domingo CUGALA, Faculty of Agronomy, Maputo
- Janet MUGANYIZI, from Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Environment
Afrique du Sud :
- Aruna MANRAKHAN, Citrus Research International
La Réunion (France) :
- Serge QUIILICI, chercheur entomologiste CIRAD
- Coline BRUNET, VSC Entomologie, CIRAD
FAO / AIEA :
- Rui PEREIRA, Coordinateur du programme
- Michael KIZA, Responsable Administratif Programmes Afrique