Spotted-Winged Drosophila (SWD)
The spotted winged drosophila (SWD, Drosophila suzukii) is a major horticultural pest affecting many crops particularly soft-skinned fruit including berries (e.g. blueberries), stonefruit and grapes. The larvae of SWD feed internally on host fruit and can cause losses of over 40 per cent in blueberries. In addition to larval feeding, crop losses are also attributed to damage during egg laying (oviposition) and secondary infection of the fruit.
- Attacks a range of soft skinned fruit species
- Egg deposition and larval feeding can occur in maturing, firm fruit
- Small (2-3 mm in length) flies with yellow-brown colouring, dark bands on the abdomens and red eyes
- Males have a dark spot on the tip of their forewings
- Larvae feed internally on fruit, are cream coloured and about 3 mm long
- Secondary infections can occur at egg laying sites, leading to fruit rot
- Flies spread throughout crops by flight or longer distances with infested plant material
SWD is NOT yet found in Australia, and it is only through continued vigilance that we can keep it out.
Where is it now?
SWD is native to south east Asia but has spread to other parts of Asia, North America and Europe, where it has become a serious pest.
How can I protect my farm and garden from spotted winged drosophila?
Check your crop frequently for the presence of new pests and unusual symptoms. In particular, check your crop for SWD activity such as fruit damage of both immature and ripe fruit. Make sure you are familiar with common blueberry pests so when monitoring your crops for pests you will be alert to the possible presence of exotic pests.