Crop-damaging vinegar fly not detected in Estonia

Strawberries being picked from a field at Hiiekivi Tourist Farm in Pärnu County, Estonia. June 21, 2016. (Tanel Pihelgas)
7/11/2016 5:52 PM
Source: BNS
Category: Business

Responding to reports that spotted-wing drosophila (SWD), a species of vinegar fly capable of inflicting severe damage to crops of soft-skinned fruit, have been found in southern Sweden, an official at the Estonian Agricultural Board confirmed that no SWD have been sighted in Estonia.

“This pest has not been identified in Estonia in the course of surveillance,” Karin Veski, a chief specialist at the Agricultural Board, told BNS.

The sighting of spotted-wing drosophila, or Drosophila suzukii, in southern Sweden was the first time the SWD had been spotted in northern climates.

Originating from Southeast Asia, the SWD had recently been found in several areas mostly in warmer climates in the US and Europe, infesting ripening cherry, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry and strawberry crops. It has also been observed occasionally attacking other soft-flesh fruit such as plums, plumcots, nectarines and figs under the right conditions.

Unlike other species of vinegar flies, the SWD attacks healthy, ripening fruit in addition to damaged or rotting fruit.

Editor: Aili Sarapik

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