Growers within the state of Maine, who’re producing blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, are involved concerning the affect of an invasive fruit fly that has made it to the state. Its technical title is the spotted-wing drosophila, and it’s the topic of a brand new, nationwide $3 million research, funded by the USDA and led by Philip Fanning, an assistant professor of agricultural entomology on the College of Maine.
The little fly has been in Maine since 2011, however this research now goals to correctly doc the potential injury it will possibly do, and whether or not a parasite Fanning is creating might be efficient in stopping it. Fanning stated work with the parasite has already begun, however the $3 million grant, introduced on September 26, will permit the research to increase to incorporate natural farmers as properly.
Maine has its share of native fruit flies, Fanning stated, however this selection comes from southeast Asia, and first made an look within the US in California in 2008. Fruit flies injury crops by laying eggs inside fruits akin to berries. The drosophila, Fanning stated, is stronger, and may penetrate even tougher, unripe berries, placing berry growers at a fair higher danger.