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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Wapato, Washington » Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research » Research » Research Project #439124

Research Project: Spotted Wing-Drosophila Areawide Project

Location: Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research

Project Number: 2092-22430-003-007-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 15, 2020
End Date: Sep 14, 2023

Spotted-wing drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii, a native insect of Asia, is now a serious world-wide invasive pest that attacks small fruits and cherries. While insecticides can be effective against SWD, some products can harm beneficial insects, cause secondary pest outbreaks, complicate exports due to fruit maximum residue limits, or negatively impact the environment and human health. Pesticides and other common management approaches for SWD have focused on within-crop management. Because SWD can develop on many wild and ornamental species, the surrounding landscape contributes to pest pressure, and therefore, areawide controls require closer examination. Our team of entomologists, commercial growers, and a crop management company will work on an areawide management plan. In the first year (Phase I), the project will focus on site selection and collecting baseline data from one site pair in California, two pairs in Oregon, and one pair in Washington.

This project will focus on sustainable tools based on: 1) evidence of efficacy, 2) likelihood of grower adoption, 3) availability of a commercial product, 4) practicality, and 5) economics. Areawide tools include parasitoid releases into the non-crop area, SWD modeling and monitoring to better time insecticide applications, use of non-toxic sprays or products that manipulate SWD behavior. Phase I research focuses specifically on developing efficient mass rearing methods for a parasitoid of SWD to prepare for areawide implementation. In Phase II, we will release parasitoids into surrounding non-crop areas to lower the overall SWD pressure in the landscape and incorporate other sustainable tools in grower fields.