UPDATE ON SPOTTED WING DROSOPHILA
Jaime Piñero – Lincoln University IPM program
Since late May, 2014, the Lincoln University (LU) IPM program, working in partnership with MU Extension, has been monitoring weekly the presence and abundance of Spotted Wing Drosophila (SWD) in 25 locations throughout Missouri. SWD is a serious new invasive pest that attacks small fruit crops, some stone fruits (cherry, nectarine, peach), high tunnel tomatoes, strawberry, and wild hosts (including pokeweed, autumn olive, crabapple, nightshade, mulberry, and wild grape). Raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and elderberry are at the greatest risk.
The seasonal activity of SWD (estimated by trap captures and presented as the mean number of males and females per trap per day) is shown below for three selected locations: Osceola (Southwest MO), Columbia (Central MO), and St. Peters (East-Central MO).
Osceola: One SWD trap was deployed at a cherry tree in mid June, and the first SWD captures took place on July 14th, coinciding with the ripening period of the cherry fruit. As soon as the tree was no longer fruiting, the trap was relocated onto a nearby blackberry patch. SWD captures have been increasing steadily, reaching a seasonal peak of about 12 females per trap per day. Insecticides should have been applied from the moment the first SWD were captured; however, the farmer was not interested in protecting the cherries or the blackberries.
Columbia: The SWD monitoring trap was placed on June 3rd in a commercial blackberry orchard. The first SWD captures were recorded a month later, on July 8th. The farmer was advised to spray an insecticide as soon as the first fruit was changing color. It seems that the first insecticide was applied a little later than expected because a fruit sampling conducted by the LU IPM program revealed infestations by SWD on the first-ripening blackberries. Numbers of SWD have been declining since July 15th to about 4 female SWD per trap per day. Nevertheless, the farmer needs to apply insecticides on a timely manner and with good coverage to achieve the best control possible.
Examples provided above indicate that SWD populations are increasing in Missouri, so farmers who grow fall-bearing raspberries need to monitor for this pest and apply insecticides, as this is the only current way of managing this pest. Timing and good coverage are key components of an IPM program against SWD. Insecticide sprays need to be in place prior to oviposition (egg laying), and coverage needs to be thorough as the adults often hide in the denser portions of the canopy. High pressure and spray volume will be needed to reach these difficult-to-reach spots and provide thorough coverage. Even the best of the insecticides will not consistently last more than 7 days so, at a minimum, weekly applications are needed. Producers must rotate among insecticides with different modes of action to prevent/delay resistance.
IPM is a comprehensive and environmentally-friendly approach to solving pest problems that rely on a combination of common sense preventive practices.
Examples include the use of resistant crop varieties, cultural practices such as sanitation, crop rotations, trap crops, and the creation of habitat for natural enemies and pollinators. Pest monitoring is a critical component of an IPM program. If needed, treatments are made using least-risk options to target the pest without negatively impacting beneficial arthropods and the environment.
The Lincoln University Cooperative Extension (LUCE) IPM Program aims at developing (through research) and promoting (through Extension) affordable alternative insect pest management strategies to combat insect pests of fruit and vegetables in Missouri. To access the LUCE IPM program website click here:
Dr. Jaime C. Pinero
Dr. Pinero received his Ph.D.in Entomology from the Univ. of Massachusetts--Amherst and a B.S. in Agronomy from the Universidad Veracruzana, Veracruz, Mexico. He now serves as an Assistant Professor/State IPM Specialist at Lincoln University Cooperative Extension & Research. His research interests focus on insect sensory ecology and behavior with an emphasis on Integrated Pest Management methods for improved production of fruits and vegetables.
CLICK HERE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT DR. PINERO'S RESEARCH, EXTENSION AND TEACHING RESPONSIBILITIES AT LINCOLN UNIVERSITY....
Other Relevant SWD resources
Michigan State University:
http://www.ipm.msu.edu/invasive species/spotted wing drosophila
North Carolina State University:
Oregon State University:
North Central IPM Center
Other Relevant BMSB resources
Michigan State University:
http://ipm.msu.edu/invasive species/brown marmorated stink bug