The Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) is used around the word to control many pest fruit flies, and such programs are supported by significant investment and depth in R&D. By comparison Qfly SIT remains poorly developed and insufficiently effective for deployment as a mainstream control option. A substantial R&D effort is now needed to raise Qfly SIT to world standard, and to establish SIT as a mainstream Qfly control option for use in area wide management programs.
The SITPlus consortium has been established to lead and co-ordinate the development of Qfly SIT and to support the development activities of a new Qfly SIT facility currently under construction in SA. We here propose a substantial research program that aims to bring both the technology and scientific underpinnings of Qfly SIT and AWM up to world standard as quickly as possible to meet the schedule required to ensure that the SITPlus initiative, and the new SA facility, succeed in delivering viable and sustainable solutions to Australian growers.
Our approach is integrative and collaborative, with broad participation from across the SITPlus consortium to make best use of available expertise and facilities across institutions. In addition to meeting the immediate and strategic needs of Qfly SIT R&D, this project will also train the next generation of fruit fly and biosecurity researchers for Australia. Eighteen PhD students and eight Research Fellows will be directly involved in the proposed research, working across institutions to carry out each element of their work at the most appropriate institution.
Delivered by Macquarie University / Project code: HG14033