Researchers ask: How damaging is spotted wing fly to organics?

04/25/2014 01:56:00 PM
Vicky Boyd

spotted wing drosphilaCourtesy Washington State UniversityA research group is surveying growers of organic small fruit about the damage caused by spotted wing drosophila.Researchers who are part of a multi-state effort to fight the spotted wing drosophila need help from organic small fruit growers to gauge the pest's impact.

Ashfaq Sial from the University of Georgia entomology department and Mary Rogers with the University of Minnesota horticulture department have put together an online survey on the pest and its damage.

The two, as well as Greg Loeb, Cornell University grape and small fruit entomologist, are inviting organic small fruit producers to take the survey. The results will be used to estimate the amount of damage from SWD as well as help direct applied multi-state research, according to a news release.

The data will then be used to draft a planning grant. If the grant is approved, it would allow researchers, Extension educators, and industry and government representatives to work together to develop a full proposal to submit to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's NIFA Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative for funding.

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