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Plant Sciences and Entomology


Use of early ripening highbush blueberry cultivars to avoid infestation and mass trapping were evaluated for managing spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura). Fourteen highbush blueberry cultivars were sampled for spotted wing drosophila infestation. Most ‘Earliblue’, ‘Bluetta’, and ‘Collins’ fruit were harvested before spotted wing drosophila oviposition commenced, and so escaped injury. Most fruit from ‘Bluejay’, ‘Blueray’, and ‘Bluehaven’ were also harvested before the first week of August, after which spotted wing drosophila activity led to high levels of blueberry infestation. In a separate experiment, damage to cultivars was related to the week in which fruit were harvested, with greater damage to fruit observed as the season progressed. Attractant traps placed within blueberry bushes increased nearby berry infestation by 5%, irrespective of cultivar and harvest date. The significant linear reduction in infestation with increasing distance from the attractant trap suggests that traps are influencing fly behavior to at least 5.5 m. Insecticides applied to the exterior of traps, compared with untreated traps, revealed that only 10-30% of flies visiting traps enter the traps and drown. Low trap efficiency may jeopardize surrounding fruits by increasing local spotted wing drosophila activity. To protect crops, traps for mass trapping should be placed in a perimeter outside fruit fields and insecticides need to be applied to the surface of traps or on nearby fruit to function as an attract-and-kill strategy.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License