Step 3 – Monitor the Qfly

In order to successfully manage any insect pest, it is important to know where they are, and when.

Making predictions about Qfly population dynamics and behaviour is complex, even though we can draw some general conclusions from looking at the landscape and understanding how the pest behaves. A wrong assumption can undermine you program, so it’s important to regularly monitor what’s going on.

Monitoring will also help you detect Qfly before they can cause any major problems. You can use data to identify hotspots in particular areas, or at particular times, through risk mapping, and to build better forecasting capacity.

Every area-wide management program should include a monitoring scheme; for example, one based on a trapping grid. This includes checking traps regularly and keeping records with information about where the catches and sightings were. To improve your monitoring from year to year, keep track of where you found flies and at what time of year or season. Whether you are keeping Qfly out of a region or area, or managing established populations, you need to do constant surveillance to understand the problem from the local context to across the region.

Remember, Qfly generally follow seasonal patterns. Make sure your monitoring grid considers Qfly behaviour in line with its hosts and habitats to increase your chance of catching flies when they first emerge after winter.

You can use the gathered data to:

• establish when and where Qfly cause problems
• generate risk maps
• evaluate (Step 8) the effectiveness of any management action.

The science section can help explain this further, there are example maps in the landscape section, and examples of how monitoring can inform targeting particular times of year.

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