Seasonal phenology of Bactrocera minax (Diptera: Tephritidae) in western Bhutan
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The Chinese citrus fruit fly, Bactrocera (Tetradacus) minax (Enderlein), is one of the major citrus pests in Bhutan and can cause >50% mandarin (Citrus reticulata Blanco) fruit drop. As part of the development of a management strategy for the fly in mandarin orchards, population monitoring and experimental manipulations were carried out to determine: (i) adult emergence period; (ii) adult phenology patterns; (iii) period of crop susceptibility; and (iv) period from fruit drop to pupation. In western Bhutan, adult flies emerge from the overwintering pupal stage in late April/early May. Most flies are mature by the end of May and it is inferred that mating occurs at this time: from the beginning of June males rapidly disappear from the population and by mid- to late June are rare or absent from traps. Mature females are present in the mandarin crop at the beginning of June, but very little oviposition occurs until mid-June, while most damage has occurred by mid-July. Initiation of oviposition into mandarins is almost certainly linked to crop phenology. Adult flies disappear from the orchard system during August. After fruit drop, larvae were recorded leaving the fruit to pupate within 13 days. The use of early to mid-season protein bait sprays and/or targeted use of systemic insecticides during the one month oviposition period, plus the removal of fallen fruit once every 10 days, are recommended as control strategies.
Bulletin of Entomological Research
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