Bactrocera facialis fruit fly

We have found male facialis fruit flies in surveillance traps in Ōtara, Auckland. Find out more about these flies and what we’re doing.

What's the situation?

Three single male facialis fruit flies have been found in separate surveillance traps in Ōtara. The first was detected on 18 February and the most recent was found in a surveillance trap on 5 March, 630 metres to the north of the last find inside the current Zone B.

A second Zone A has been established in Ōtara, which mean restrictions on a different area. The current Zone B is unchanged. We strongly urge people living in Ōtara to check if they are living in either zone. To find out if your home or business is in the Controlled Area, enter your address in this map.

To date we have cut and examined around 500kg of fruit in our mobile laboratory, which was gathered from Zone A backyards in Ōtara. We have yet to find any fruit fly larvae.

Our media releases have information about the discovery of the fly and what we're doing.

6 March      –  Fruit Fly in Auckland – situation update

25 February – Fruit fly in Auckland – situation update

22 February – Fruit fly in Auckland – situation update

21 February – Fruit fly in Auckland – situation update

20 February – situation update 1

19 February – new species of fruit fly found in Auckland

Brochures available

Download the brochure about fruit flies

Other languages

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Another type of fruit fly also found

Note, we're also investigating the discovery of a Queensland fruit flies in two suburbs on Auckland’s North Shore.

Call us if you see a fruit fly or larvae

If you find larvae (they look like grains of rice) in fruit, or believe you have seen a fruit fly, call 0800 80 99 66.


Facialis fruit flies can harm home gardens and horticultural crops, in particular, capsicum and chillies.

The pest is difficult to catch at the border because it can arrive as eggs or tiny larvae concealed inside fruit.

General information about Bactrocera facialis fruit fly

Ōtara under a Controlled Area Notice

To manage the fruit flies that have been found, an area of Ōtara, Auckland, has been put under a Controlled Area Notice (CAN). This is effective from 19 February 2019. This restricts the movement of certain fruits and vegetables out of the Controlled Area to help prevent the spread of any fruit flies if there are more than one.

The Controlled Area Notice was updated on 6 March, with a second Zone A being established in Ōtara. The current Zone B is unchanged.

The CAN is a legal notice and might affect you if you live in the area.  

Find out if you're in the Controlled Area

To find out if your home or business is in the Controlled Area and which zone of the area, enter your address in this map.

The two Zone A’s are marked by a red circles. Zone B is highlighted in yellow.

Please note the following section of content is possibly being delivered from an external source (IFRAME in HTML terms), and may present unusual experiences for screen readers.

Movement restrictions on fruits and vegetables in the Controlled Area

In summary, the restrictions on moving fruit and vegetables are:

  • If you live in Zone A (refer to map):
    No whole fruit or vegetables (except leafy and root vegetables like taro, lettuce, cabbage, bok choy, rhubarb, broccoli, brussels sprouts, carrots, parsnips, potatoes, kumara, celery, onions, spring onions) can be taken out of Zone A. In addition, no fruit or vegetable waste (such as fruit skins and cores/stones, peelings and the like) or garden waste (such as prunings from fruit trees or vegetable garden cuttings) can go out of the area. The fruit or vegetables should either be disposed of in a home in-sink disposal unit or put into specially supplied Biosecurity New Zealand bins.
  • If you live in Zone B (refer to map):
    You must not move homegrown fruit and vegetables out of the Controlled Area. In other words, produce grown inside the Controlled Area cannot be moved out of it. You are free to move commercially-purchased fruit and vegetables (such as fruit and vegetables bought at the supermarket) out of the area. Homegrown produce waste and garden waste needs to be disposed of in Biosecurity New Zealand bins.

If in doubt, don't take it out.

Fruits and vegetables that are affected

All whole fruits and vegetables must meet the requirements of the Controlled Area Notice. Exceptions are:

  • leafy vegetables
  • root vegetables
  • cooked, processed, preserved, dried, frozen, and canned fruit

We've prepared a brochure with information and guidance about movement controls.

Download the brochure

Information for people in the controlled area making packed lunches

If you live in the Controlled Area (refer to map) and you're preparing lunch for work or school, you can still include fruit and vegetables, make sure it's cut up and you can't see any larvae in it.

If you find larvae in fruit or believe you have seen a fruit fly, call 0800 80 99 66.

Information for retailers

Host plants are those that the fruit fly feeds on. These are subject to movement controls for retailers. These include:

Chillis, Peppers, breadfruit, lemons, pummelo, mandarin, naval orange, grapefruit, Surinam cherry, chestnuts, mango, giant granadilla, avocado, Fijian longan, peach, guava, tomato, rose apple, and Singapore almonds.

Information about Export Restriction Zones

We have established an Export Restriction Zone (ERZ) of 5.5km around the Controlled Area. This means export consignments of facialis fruit fly host material must meet additional requirements to move through the ERZ and be eligible for export.

All facialis fruit fly host material destined for export and travelling through an Export Restriction Zone must be contained in an insect-proofed environment and some additional documentation provided.

We've prepared the following information and guidance about the Export Restriction Zone and transit requirements.

Download the FAQ

Download the requirements and guidance for exporters

If you are a grower, or packhouse, check if you are in the ERZ with our interactive map below.

What you can do

Fruit fly larvae on a peach
Fruit fly larvae on a peach
 Fruit fly larvae on a mango
Fruit fly larvae on a mango


Facialis fruit flies are slightly smaller than a housefly with a black thorax (the part below the head), have yellow areas near the wings, and on the triangular area at the end of the thorax. The abdomen or lower body is orange-brown except for some black markings in the middle and towards the sides. The wings are mostly clear, except for dark veins on the front of the wings. See the "Background" section above for images.

If you find larvae in fruit or believe you have seen a fruit fly, call 0800 80 99 66.

If you live around Ōtara, find out if you're in the Controlled Area. If so, you will need to follow legal restrictions around movement of fruit and vegetables. Remember – if in doubt, don't take it out.

If you have any enquiries, call 0800 80 99 66.

Risk to New Zealand

Facialis fruit fly would jeopardise a horticulture industry worth $5 billion a year in domestic sales and exports.

  • 80% of New Zealand's horticulture crops are susceptible to attack by these fruit flies.
  • Fruits and vegetables they attack become inedible.
  • Any fruit and vegetables would be subject to trade restrictions.

Keeping them out

To keep facialis fruit fly out, New Zealand:

  • imposes tough requirements on imported produce
  • checks passengers, luggage and freight at the border
  • has had a dedicated trapping programme since the 1970s.

The traps are an early-warning system, telling us if flies have arrived so we can eradicate them.

Image files for media use

Media needing images of Bactrocera facialis fruit flies can download these files:

Bactrocera facialis dorsal

Bactrocera facialis lateral

Fruit fly larvae on peach

Fruit fly larvae on mango

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