Blueberry maggot flies are flying in southwest Michigan

Traps should be checked weekly for blueberry maggot flies.

Blueberry maggot is a native insect pest that is still present in Michigan blueberry fields. In most commercial farms, the management practices for other pests, especially spotted wing Drosophila, have minimized the importance of this insect. However, it is important to monitor for this pest to know when the adult flies become active.

To demonstrate the rapid emergence of blueberry maggot flies recently, traps in an unmanaged field in Berrien County went from an average of five blueberry maggot flies per trap last Thursday, June 22, to 29.6 per trap today, June 27.

Reports this week also indicate emergence in Van Buren County, while our monitoring at the Trevor Nichols Research Center in Fennville, Michigan, did not detect blueberry maggot yet this summer.

To control the flies and prevent development of the eggs and larvae, susceptible ripe blueberries should be protected within seven days of first capture. Details of the management options are available at “Blueberry maggot emergence sharply up after rains” from Michigan State University Extension.

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