Fruit flies (Bactrocera invadens and Ceratitis rosa)
Two species of fruit flies (Bactrocera invadens and Ceratitis rosa) attack banana in Kenya. Bactrocera invadens is a new species recently discovered in Africa, its 2-3mm in size. This fruit fly is reported attacking banana in Sudan and Kenya and it is a major threat since it leads to rejection of banana in the export market.
One of the most effective control techniques against fruit flies in general is to wrap fruit, either in newspaper, a paper bag, or in the case of long/thin fruits, a polythene sleeve. This is a simple physical barrier to oviposition but it has to be applied well before the fruit is attacked. Little information is available on the attack time for most fruits, but few Bactrocera spp. attack prior to ripening.
Infected fruit on the ground will act as reservoir for re-infestation. If infested fruit reaches the market then maggot infested fruit will be discarded, so allowing emerging adults access to new crop areas.
- Bagging of young banana fruits is an effective method, used in the Pacific and South East Asia for protection against fruit flies. (Personal communication S. Ekesi, AFFI, icipe; Ekesi and Billah, 2006). For more information on Bagging click here