Evaluation of exclusion netting for spotted-wing drosophila (Diptera: Drosophilidae) management in Minnesota wine grapes.
Spotted-wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura), an economically damaging invasive species of numerous fruit crops, was first detected in Minnesota in 2012. High fecundity, and short generation times facilitated a rapid rise in the global pest status of D. suzukii, particularly in North America and Europe. To date, the majority of crop injury research has focused on fruit crops such as blueberries, raspberries, and cherries. However, little is known regarding the impact of D. suzukii on the wine grape industry in the upper Midwest region of the United States. Field trials were conducted in Minnesota during the summers of 2017-2018 to examine season-long phenology of D. suzukii in wine grape vineyards and wineries, and to assess the efficacy of exclusion netting for control of D. suzukii. Four treatments were evaluated, (1) open plot check (control), (2) open plot treated with an insecticide, (3) exclusion netting, and (4) exclusion netting, with artificial infestations of D. suzukii adults. Exclusion netting was applied at véraison and removed at harvest. On each sample date, 20 berries (10 intact and 10 injured) were collected from each plot for dissection. The number of larvae and adults were recorded for each berry to determine infestation levels. As shown by mean larval infestations and injured berries across treatments, exclusion netting provided a significant reduction in the level of D. suzukii infested berries when compared with the untreated check. These results indicate that exclusion netting could provide an effective alternative management strategy for D. suzukii in wine grapes.