Fruit flies

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R. C. Copeland, icipe
Is this a Minor Pest?
Minor Pest Title

Fruit flies (Bactrocera cucurbitae and Ceratitis capitata)

Minor Pest Description

Fruit flies that feed on passion fruit in Africa include the melon fly (Bactrocera cucurbitae) and the Mediterranean fruit fly (Ceratitis capitata).


Pierced young fruit shrivels and falls; later injuries cause damage that lowers the market value of the fruit. However, the incidence of fruit flies on passion fruit is low, and usually of not economic importance. So control may not be necessary.


Minor Pest What to do.
  • Collect and destroy all fallen fruits at least twice a week during the fruit season.
  • Do not put collected damaged fruits into compost heaps. Instead, burn them or bury them at least 50 cm deep, so that the fruit flies cannot reach the soil surface.
  • Remove fruits with dimples and those that ooze clear sap. This method is more laborious than picking the rotten fruits from the ground, but it is also more effective.
  • Whenever possible, wrap fruit in newspaper or paper bags to prevent fruit flies from laying eggs on the fruit. This has to be done well before the fruit matures.
  • Pick overripe fruits, as they attract fruit flies.
  • Physical methods include fruit fly traps and fruit bagging, see on fruit-fly datasheet
Minor Pest Position
Minor Pest Firstcontent
Pest Type
Other Crops
Host Plants
Passion fruit