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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Gross Out

Author
item McInnis, Donald

Submitted to: Scholastic Science World
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: September 30, 2002
Publication Date: December 13, 2002
Citation: Mcinnis, D.O. 2002. Gross out. Scholastic Science World. 59(6):21.

Interpretive Summary: Fruit can be infested with many kinds of fruit flies that grow inside the fruit and ultimately destroy the fruit. The maggots grow for several days, then leave the fruit to pupate in the ground. Adult flies emerge from the ground to continue the cycle. Efforts to control the flies include the use of sterile flies, in which the fly controls itself. Preadults are irradiated to sterilize them, then the emerging adults are released into the field to find mates and sterilize them. This process leads to a decline in the wild population and more marketable fruit.

Technical Abstract: Fruit can be infested with many kinds of fruit flies that grow inside the fruit and ultimately destroy the fruit. The maggots grow for several days, then leave the fruit to pupate in the ground. Adult flies emerge from the ground to continue the cycle. Efforts to control the flies include the use of sterile flies, in which the fly controls itself. Preadults are irradiated to sterilize them, then the emerging adults are released into the field to find mates and sterilize them. This process leads to a decline in the wild population and more marketable fruit.

Last Modified: 7/25/2014
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