Jul 20, 2021
SWD: A 2021 update for Pennsylvania berry growers

This is the time of year when spotted wing drosophila populations can rapidly increase in Pennsylvania, making efforts to control this pest a necessity for most berry crop growers.

Updated info can be found through The Sustainable Spotted Wing Drosophila Project website. If you haven’t yet found this website, take some time when you can to browse the site, and see what is there.

Of particular interest to many growers is the insecticide efficacy ranking compiled by this group. Ratings are provided by project entomologists, growers, and crop consultants with experience with spotted wing drosophila from across the country, and are compiled by Phillip Fanning (Univ. of Maine) and Rufus Isaacs (Michigan State Univ). The article summarizing the results and other important points can be found at 2021 ranking of insecticides for their performance against spotted-wing Drosophila. The article includes a graph that makes relative efficacy rankings easy to see and a second graph that color-codes products by chemical class to make it easy to rotate chemistries. Rotating product chemistries is important, as resistance has already been found in some spotted wing drosophila populations.

It should be noted that some of the rankings are based on limited data, and sometimes there is variation in the ratings assigned by different contributors. If no error bar appears on top of the vertical bar indicating efficacy for a particular product, that means that only one rating was received. If the error bar is large, this is an indication of variability in how well different contributors thought the product worked, so the rating should be taken with a “grain of salt”. A small error bar means more consensus in the rating.

As a supplement to the information provided on the project website, here is an updated table that also lists active ingredients of each product rated, IRAC codes, berry crops on which these products can be used, and the days-to-harvest and re-entry intervals for each. As always, be sure to follow the label directions, and if you are in another state other than Pennsylvania, please make sure that this information also applies to your location.

Spotted Wing Drosophila: Supplemental Information on Pesticides Table for PA Growers

Kathy Demchak, senior Extension agent, Penn State University

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