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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Understanding the seasonal and reproductive biology of olive fruit fly is critical to its management

  • Author(s): Burrack, Hannah J;
  • Bingham, Ray;
  • Price, Richard;
  • Connell, Joseph H;
  • Phillips, Phil A;
  • Wunderlich, Lynn;
  • Vossen, Paul M;
  • O'Connell, Neil V;
  • Ferguson, Louise;
  • Zalom, Frank G.
  • et al.

The olive fruit fly was first detected in Los Angeles in 1998 and in all the olive-growing regions of California soon after. Following its initial detection, UC researchers and Cooperative Extension farm advisors, county agricultural commissioners and the California Department of Food and Agriculture Pest Detection and Emergency Project established a statewide monitoring program to determine the extent of the olive fruit fly’s occurrence, track its seasonal biology and evaluate monitoring tools. Fly populations and infestations can reach high levels throughout California but tend to be lower in the San Joaquin Valley. Trap captures typically exhibit a bimodal distribution with peaks in the spring and fall. Olive infestation is related to fly densities, climate and fruit size. Gravid, mated females vary in density throughout the year but are present at some level year-round. The data is being used to develop models that will better predict when the adults are active and olives are at risk.

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