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Spotted Winged Drosophila Pest on Fruit

The spotted winged drosophila, an Asian vinegar fly, has moved into parts of North America damaging a variety of fruit. Be on the lookout for this pest.

This pest has been spreading throughout North America since 2008. These very small insects can’t fly great distances and are probably being spread via human transportation.

The female spotted winged drosophila cuts into the intact fruit and lays her eggs under the skin.  This process creates entryways for sour rot and other fungal diseases to enter and damage the fruit. The eggs hatch, larvae grow and may still be present in the fruit at harvest.

Monitor your plantings with a commercial or homemade trap for early detection.

The first step in control for this and other pests is regular harvesting and removal of overripe or damaged fruit. Try to remove and destroy all infested fruit from the plants and surrounding soil.

A bit more information: Make your own trap for monitoring this pest. Use a 32-ounce clear deli container. Drill or melt 10 - 3/16” to 3/8” holes in the lid. Pour an inch of apple cider vinegar or a mixture of 1T active yeast, 4T sugar and 12oz water in the trap.  Add a couple drops of unscented soap or hang a yellow sticky card from the lid inside the container.

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