$505,000 Management Strategies for the Invasive Spotted Wing Drosophila to improve spotted wing drosophila (SWD) forecasting by understanding the relative impacts of local movement, long-distance migration, and potential overwintering sources. Researchers will also investigate the efficacy of innovative and alternative management techniques and evaluate the cost effectiveness and aggregate economic impact of SWD management alternatives to develop decision making tools for Minnesota berry growers.
Cooperators include Metropolitan State University.
Mary Rogers, principal investigator
Matthew Gullickson, PhD candidate
Anh Tran, PhD candidate
Demoz Gebre-Egziabher, co-investigator
Gigi DiGiacomo, co-investigator
William Hutchison, co-investigator
Andrew Petran, post-doctoral associate
Mark Asplen, co-investigator
Follow Mark Asplen on Twitter @masplen1
Winter 2017 update
Spotted wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii, SWD) is an invasive, cosmopolitan fruit fly that has been present in MN since 2012. Female flies lay eggs in ripe, soft skinned fruit including raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries. Eggs hatch into larvae that feed inside the fruit, rendering fruit unmarketable. SWD is causing significant economic damage to the berry industry as a whole, but the economic impact in our state is not well documented. Worldwide, growers are increasing pesticide spray applications in attempts to manage this new pest. Repeat applications of broad-spectrum pesticide sprays can increase the risk to non-target insects and have negative environmental consequences. Additionally, insecticide sprays may fail to adequately protect fruit from damage due to high pest populations and low thresholds. Because SWD is a new pest in MN, it is not known whether or not adults survive through winter or migrate into the state from warmer regions, making it difficult to predict when SWD will first appear. In this project, we aim to minimize the threat of SWD to natural resources and the economy of our state in three ways: 1) improve our understanding of the relative impacts of local movement, long-distance migration, and potential overwintering sources of SWD; 2) investigate the efficacy of alternative management techniques including biological pest pesticides and exclusion; and 3) evaluate the cost effectiveness of SWD management alternatives and develop decision-making tools for Minnesota berry growers.