The community has been talking about fruit fly this week following reports in The Guardian.
This is great – everyone needs to be aware of the importance of managing their backyard fruit to help protect our multi-million dollar fruit industry. Council has a large role to play in this fight as well by helping distribute traps, educating the community, and investigating potential infestations in town.
If you suspect that a neighbour or friend has fruit fly in their backyard, please do the neighbourly thing and chat to them about it, offer to help them if needed. If that’s not possible, you can inform Council of the suspected infestation by completing a form available from our Splatt Street office, information centre or website. We will discuss the issue with the property owner and provide advice on how they can resolve their potential outbreak.
The next round of free traps will be distributed in Swan Hill in mid-February and I encourage everyone to follow the instructions and put the traps up. They lure fruit fly and help reduce the population in the long term. The results so far are very encouraging, but traps are not a complete solution.
It is still important to remove fruit as it ripens and to pick up fallen fruit as soon as possible. Place unwanted fruit into a sealed plastic bag, leave it in the sun for five days to kill any flies and larvae, and put it into your rubbish bin. Consider cover spraying, netting and other trapping methods available from garden and hardware stores. And if you can’t look after your trees, please consider removing them.
More information on managing fruit fly is available here.
Help set our region’s economic direction
If you have a passion for the future prosperity of our community, we would like to hear from you. Council is setting up an Advisory Committee to help build an Economic Development Strategy. The strategy will set the direction for our municipality’s economic development over the next five years and beyond.
Applications close 3 February. Contact our Economic Development Unit on 5032 3033 or firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Celebrate Australia Day
Community groups across our region have been working hard to put together Australia Day events for 26 January. I encourage everyone to get together with their neighbours, friends and family, to celebrate what’s great about Australia and what’s great about our communities too.
In Swan Hill, head down to Riverside Park from 6.30am for the traditional breakfast and musical entertainment, and be there as we announce citizen, young citizen and community event of the year.
Our Ambassadors Michael Cristiano and Lisa Edwards will perform at the breakfast too. They will then head to Lake Boga where the Lions Club will host a community lunch at Catalina Park at 12pm.
At Robinvale, head down to Caix Square from 7am for the traditional breakfast (cost is $5). Join Cr John Katis as he hands out school awards, hear from 2016 school captain Peter Jealous as guest speaker, and enjoy some musical entertainment.
Breakfasts will also be held at other places around our municipality – at Ultima Hall from 7.30am, Monash Avenue Park in Nyah West from 8am, at the Manangatang Pool from 7.30am, Beverford Fire Station from 7.30am and at the Wemen Fire Station from 7am.