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Evaluation of lure dispensers for fruit fly surveillance in New Zealand



BACKGROUND: Fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) represent a major biosecurity threat to the horticulture sector of New Zealand, which is entirely free of these invasive pests. A nationwide surveillance programme is conducted to ensure any incursion is detected as early as possible. A review of the lure dispensers used is reported here.

RESULTS: Lure dispenser emission trials found that the currently used lure plugs release lure more slowly under New Zealand subtropical to temperate climates than wafer dispensers. Subsequent trapping experiments at high altitude in Hawaii (as a mimic of New Zealand meteorological and expected fruit fly ecological conditions) compared Lynfield traps baited with the existing lure plug dispensers and newer wafer dispensers. Catches of wild Oriental fruit flies, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel), were 9.5-fold higher with methyl eugenol wafers than with the plugs. Recaptures of sterile melon flies, Bactrocera cucurbitae (Coquillet), were 2.6-fold higher with cuelure wafers than with the plugs. Recaptures of sterile Mediterranean fruit flies, Ceratitis capitata Weid., were not significantly higher with trimedlure wafers than with the plugs.

CONCLUSIONS: Release rate and trapping experiments found new lure dispensers differed in release rate characteristics from existing dispensers under temperate and subtropical conditions, and indicated some potential for improvement in surveillance efficacy. Copyright © 2008 Society of Chemical Industry