Minister of Agriculture, the Honourable Eugene Hamilton, has urged residents and citizens to help protect crop production in St. Kitts and Nevis from pests such as the Mediterranean Fruit Fly by not interfering with traps the government has placed to address the threat.
To help protect against the spread of the Mediterranean Fruit Fly, or Medifly as it is popularly known, and the Carambola Fruit Fly, the government implemented a robust surveillance programme, with fruit fly traps placed in plants and trees at ports of entry — the Deep-Water Port; the Basseterre Ferry Terminal, the R. L. Bradshaw International Airport and Port Zante — to monitor for the Mediterranean Fruit Fly and other pests.
“It is an important agriculture surveillance method to prevent our nation-state from being [overridden] by pests that are not supposed to be in this country … So those persons, when you go, and you see those traps — it is a yellow thing — don’t destroy them, for goodness sake. You are helping to ruin the health of our crops,” the minister said, noting that at the Basseterre Ferry Terminal, in particular, persons interfere with the traps and destroy them.
Both species can be imported into St. Kitts and Nevis by those who bring undeclared fruits, plants, or vegetables into the twin-island federation.The traps attract the pests “like a magnet,” allowing officials to monitor for any infestation.