In 2005 the Republic of Seychelles initiated a Programme, with financial assistance from the European Union, to eradicate from its territory the Melon Fruit Fly (Bactrocera cucurbitae Coq.), which was accidentally introduced in 1999 and has established itself as a serious pest.
Ana Larcher was part of the Technical Assistance Team from Imperial College. She was responsible for providing technical assistance to the programme for a period of 6 weeks during which two training courses were organised
a. Training Course for Pesticide Applicators:
Held over a period of four days, it aimed at training the field workers in the project on pesticide safety and application. The course was accredited by the Pesticide Board and led to the award of certificates of pesticide applicator by the Ministry of Health to all the field workers. The certificate is valid for 3 years.
Pesticide training course programme
b. Training Course for Senior Technicians/Extension workers:
A 3 days training course was organised for senior officers. Participants included extension officers, plant protection and quarantine officers and research staff. This was a train the trainers workshop aiming at preparing ministry officers in charge of organising farmer’s workshops. The control techniques to be used for melon fly were presented and an on-farm practical session was organised. The final day of the course was dedicated to developing all the necessary contents for a farmer’s booklet with information on all control methods.