Fruit fly is one of the most insidious pests of summer fruit crops. They are active from spring to late summer, attacking the soft fruits of tomatoes, peaches, nectarines, plums, citrus and feijoas amongst others. This season the defence against fruit fly attack has just received a boost as scientists intensify efforts to protect horticultural crops from one of the nation's most damaging pests. Millions of sterile Queensland Fruit Flies will be released over trial sites in NSW and Victoria following successful releases of sterile flies in South Australia over the past year. Some of the nation's leading scientists have invested countless hours ensuring the sterile fruit flies will be fit and attractive to native flies, encouraging them to 'mate' without producing offspring. Adult fruit flies emerge from the soil in spring with males the first to arrive on the scene seeking out a mate. Overwintering adult flies also become active and females sting and lay eggs in maturing fruit, the maggots develop in infested fruit and emerge to pupate in the ground. Populations will also increase as temperatures warm and suitable hosts become available. The use of splash baits and lures has become a preferred method for fruit fly control. Commercially available splash baits containing a protein-based food attractant and the insecticide Spinosad (derived from a soil bacteria) is coarsely sprayed onto the lower foliage of the tree only. The fruit fly is attracted to the bait and upon feeding ingests the insecticide. Ceratrap, and Naturalure are protein-based products that attract and kill both male and female fruit fly. Simply set and forget the traps in your fruit trees at a height of 1.5m - 2m for long lasting control. Traps should be hung when fruits are in the early stages of development around 45 days prior to anticipated harvest for best results. Rich Grow Naturally Based Fruit Fly Spray Concentrate is formulated to control and repel fruit fly on all fruit trees. It's formulated using naturally based ingredients, garlic and pyrethrum and an organic compound piperonyl butoxide that acts as a synergist which despite having no pesticidal activity of its own, enhances the potency of pyrethrin. This product is safe for use up to one day before harvest. Fruit protection bags or insect exclusion nets are another excellent form of control. They come in a range of materials and sizes, but all produce a similar result.