Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Atherigona orientalis
(pepper fruit fly)



Atherigona orientalis (pepper fruit fly)


  • Last modified
  • 27 March 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Pest
  • Natural Enemy
  • Host Animal
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Atherigona orientalis
  • Preferred Common Name
  • pepper fruit fly
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Uniramia
  •         Class: Insecta

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Adult fly of A. orientalis.
CaptionAdult fly of A. orientalis.
Copyright©Georg Goergen/IITA Insect Museum, Cotonou, Benin
Adult fly of A. orientalis.
AdultAdult fly of A. orientalis.©Georg Goergen/IITA Insect Museum, Cotonou, Benin


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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Atherigona orientalis Schiner

Preferred Common Name

  • pepper fruit fly

Other Scientific Names

  • Acritochaeta excisa
  • Acritochaeta orientalis (Schiner)
  • Acritochaeta pulvinata Grimshaw
  • Atherigona excisa var. flavipennis Malloch
  • Atherigona magnipalpis Stein
  • Atherigona trilineata Stein
  • Coenosia excisa Thomson

International Common Names

  • English: tomato fly (India)
  • Spanish: mosca menor de las frutas

Local Common Names

  • Israel: haatherigona

EPPO code

  • ATHEOR (Atherigona orientalis)

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Uniramia
  •                 Class: Insecta
  •                     Order: Diptera
  •                         Family: Muscidae
  •                             Genus: Atherigona
  •                                 Species: Atherigona orientalis

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes


BangladeshPresentPont, 1992
BhutanPresentPont, 1992
British Indian Ocean TerritoryPresentPont, 1992
Brunei DarussalamPresentPont, 1992
ChinaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-GuangdongPresentPont, 1992
-GuangxiPresentPont, 1992
-HenanPresentPont, 1992
-Hong KongPresentPont, 1992
-JiangsuPresentPont, 1992
-ZhejiangPresentPont, 1992
Christmas Island (Indian Ocean)PresentPont, 1992
Cocos IslandsPresentPont, 1992
IndiaPresentCAB ABSTRACTS Data Mining 2001
-Andhra PradeshPresentPont, 1992
-AssamPresentPont, 1992
-BiharPresentPont, 1992
-ChandigarhPresentPont, 1992
-DelhiPresentPont, 1992
-KarnatakaPresentPont, 1992
-KeralaPresentPont, 1992
-Madhya PradeshPresentPont, 1992
-MaharashtraPresentPont, 1992
-OdishaPresentPont, 1992
-RajasthanPresentPont, 1992
-Tamil NaduPresentPont, 1992
-Uttar PradeshPresentPont, 1992
-West BengalPresentPont, 1992
IndonesiaPresentPont, 1992
-Irian JayaPresentPont, 1992
-JavaPresentPont, 1992
-SumatraPresentPont, 1992
IraqUnconfirmed recordPont, 1992
IsraelPresentPont, 1992
JapanPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Ryukyu ArchipelagoPresentPont, 1992
Korea, Republic ofPresentSuh and Kwon, 2016
LebanonPresentPont, 1992
MalaysiaPresentCAB ABSTRACTS Data Mining 2001
-Peninsular MalaysiaPresentPont, 1992
-SabahPresentPont, 1992
NepalPresentPont, 1992
OmanPresentPont, 1992
PakistanPresentPont, 1992
PhilippinesPresentPont, 1992
Saudi ArabiaPresentPont, 1992
South East AsiaPresentCAB ABSTRACTS Data Mining 2001
Sri LankaPresentPont, 1992
TaiwanPresentPont, 1992
ThailandPresentPont, 1992
YemenPresentPont, 1992


AngolaPresentPont, 1992
BeninPresentPont, 1992
Burkina FasoPresentPont, 1992
CameroonPresentPont, 1992
Cape VerdePresentPont, 1992
Central African RepublicPresentPont, 1992
ComorosPresentPont, 1992
CongoPresentPont, 1992
Côte d'IvoirePresentPont, 1992
EgyptPresentPont, 1992
GhanaPresentPont, 1992
KenyaPresentPont, 1992
MalawiPresentPont, 1992
MaliPresentPont, 1992
MauritiusPresentPont, 1992
MozambiquePresentPont, 1992
NamibiaPresentPont, 1992
NigerPresentPont, 1992
NigeriaPresentOgbalu et al., 2005
RéunionPresentPont, 1992
Saint HelenaPresentPont, 1992
SenegalPresentPont, 1992
SeychellesPresentPont, 1992
Sierra LeonePresentPont, 1992
South AfricaPresentPont, 1992
-Canary IslandsPresentPont, 1992
SudanPresentPont, 1992
TanzaniaPresentPont, 1992
-ZanzibarPresentPont, 1992
TogoPresentPont, 1992
UgandaPresentPont, 1992
ZambiaPresentPont, 1992
ZimbabwePresentPont, 1992

North America

BermudaPresentPont, 1992
MexicoPresentPont, 1992
USAPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-CaliforniaPresentPont, 1992
-FloridaPresentPont, 1992
-GeorgiaPresentPont, 1992
-HawaiiPresentPont, 1992
-TexasPresentPont, 1992

Central America and Caribbean

BarbadosPresentPont, 1992
British Virgin IslandsPresentPont, 1992
DominicaPresentPont, 1992
El SalvadorPresentPont, 1992
JamaicaPresentPont, 1992
PanamaPresentPont, 1992
Puerto RicoPresentPont, 1992
Saint Kitts and NevisPresentPont, 1992
Trinidad and TobagoPresentPont, 1992

South America

ArgentinaPresentPont, 1992
BrazilPresentCAB ABSTRACTS Data Mining 2001
-GoiasPresentMarchiori et al., 2000
-Mato Grosso do SulPresentRodrigues et al., 2006
-Rio de JaneiroPresentPont, 1992
-Sao PauloPresentPont, 1992
ChilePresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Easter IslandPresentPont, 1992
ColombiaPresentPont, 1992
EcuadorPresentPont, 1992
GuyanaPresentPont, 1992
ParaguayPresentPont, 1992
PeruPresentPont, 1992
VenezuelaPresentPont, 1992


CyprusPresentPont, 1992
SpainPresentPresent based on regional distribution.


AustraliaPresentCAB ABSTRACTS Data Mining 2001
-Australian Northern TerritoryPresentPont, 1992
-New South WalesPresentPont, 1992
-QueenslandPresentPont, 1992
Cook IslandsPresentPont, 1992
FijiPresentPont, 1992
French PolynesiaPresentPont, 1992
GuamPresentPont, 1992
KiribatiPresentPont, 1992
Marshall IslandsPresentPont, 1992
Micronesia, Federated states ofPresentPont, 1992
New CaledoniaPresentPont, 1992
NiuePresentPont, 1992
Northern Mariana IslandsPresentPont, 1992
PalauPresentPont, 1992
Papua New GuineaPresentPont, 1992
Pitcairn IslandPresentPont, 1992
SamoaPresentPont, 1992
Solomon IslandsPresentPont, 1992
TongaPresentPont, 1992
VanuatuPresentPont, 1992

Growth Stages

Top of page Flowering stage, Fruiting stage, Post-harvest, Pre-emergence, Seedling stage, Vegetative growing stage

List of Symptoms/Signs

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SignLife StagesType
Fruit / internal feeding
Fruit / obvious exit hole
Growing point / dead heart
Growing point / internal feeding; boring
Leaves / internal feeding
Roots / internal feeding
Stems / dead heart
Stems / internal feeding
Vegetative organs / internal feeding
Whole plant / dead heart
Whole plant / internal feeding

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Brachymeria minuta Parasite Pupae
Brachymeria podagrica Parasite Pupae
Exoristobia philippinensis Parasite Pupae
Spalangia endius Parasite Pupae

Plant Trade

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Plant parts liable to carry the pest in trade/transportPest stagesBorne internallyBorne externallyVisibility of pest or symptoms
Fruits (inc. pods) larvae Yes Pest or symptoms not visible to the naked eye but usually visible under light microscope
Leaves eggs; larvae Yes Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye
Stems (above ground)/Shoots/Trunks/Branches eggs; larvae Yes Pest or symptoms not visible to the naked eye but usually visible under light microscope
Plant parts not known to carry the pest in trade/transport
Growing medium accompanying plants
Seedlings/Micropropagated plants
True seeds (inc. grain)


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Al-Janabi GD, Al-Azawi AF, Tamimi TM, 1983. Identification and transmission of bacterial soft disease of kohlrabi by insects. 10th International Congress of Plant Protection 1983. Volume 3. Proceedings of a conference held at Brighton, England, 20-25 November, 1983. Plant protection for human welfare, Croydon, UK: British Crop Protection Council, 1196.

APPPC, 1987. Insect pests of economic significance affecting major crops of the countries in Asia and the Pacific region. Technical Document No. 135. Bangkok, Thailand: Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific region (RAPA).

Beaver RA, 1986. Biological studies of muscoid flies (Diptera) breeding in mollusc carrion in Southeast Asia. Japanese Journal of Sanitary Zoology, 37(3):205-211.

Cahill M, 1992. Eco-climatic assessment of Atherigona orientalis (Diptera): pest potential in New Zealand. Information Paper - Bureau of Rural Resources (Canberra), No. IP/1/92:iv + 65 pp.; 23 ref.

Chughtai GH, Khan S, Baloch UK, 1985. A new record of infestation of melon fruits by an anthomyiid fly in Indus River Beach areas of D.I. Khan. Pakistan Journal of Zoology, 17(2):165-168.

Couri MS, Araujo PFde, 1992. The immature stages of Atherigona orientalis Schiner (Diptera: Muscidae). Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 105(3):490-493.

Couri MS, Pont AC, Penny ND, 2006. Muscidae (Diptera) from Madagascar: identification keys, descriptions of new species, and new records. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences, 57(25/38):799-923.

Deeming JC, 1973. A review of the taxonomy of African shoot flies associated with sorghum. In: Jotwani MG, Young WR, eds. Control of Sorghum Shoot Fly. New Delhi, India: IBH Publishing Co., 3-26.

Dike MC, 1990. Two new species of Atherigona from Nigeria with a key for the identification of Afrotropical species of the subgenus Acritochpta (Diptera: Muscidae). Systematic Entomology, 15(3):297-303.

Huckett HC, Vockeroth JR, 1987. Muscidae. In: McAlpine JF, ed. Manual of Nearctic Diptera-2. Monograph of the Biosystematic Research Centre. Ottawa, Canada: Agriculture Canada, 1115-1131.

Iheagwam EU, Nwankiti OC, 1980. Dipterous insect pests of pepper, Capsicum spp., in the eastern states of Nigeria. Revue de Zoologie Africaine, 94(4):936-939.

Kalshoven LGE, Laan PA van der (Reviser and translator), 1981. Pests of crops in Indonesia (revised). Jakarta, Indonesia: Ichtiar Baru, 701 pp.

Koller WW, Gomes PR, Gomes A, Santos STPdos, Umaki ACde S, 2004. Population dynamics of Muscidae (Diptera) in a riparian remnant forest, in Campo Grande, MS, Brazil. (Dinâmica populacional de Muscidae (Diptera) em mata ciliar remanescente, em Campo Grande, MS, Brasil.) Arquivos do Instituto Biológico (São Paulo), 71(Suplemento, RAIB):636-639.

Marchiori CH, 2001. Synanthropic flies of medical importance and their parasitoids from Itumbiara, State of Goiás, Brazil. (Moscas sinantrópicas de importância médica e seus parasitóides coletados em Itumbiara, estado de Goiás.) Revista de Patologia Tropical, 30(1):75-81.

Marchiori CH, Castro MEV, Paiva TCG, Teixeira FF, Silva CG, 2000. Muscoid Diptera of medical and veterinary importance and their parasitoids in Goiás State. (Dípteros muscóides de importância médica e veterinária e seus parasitóides em Goiás.) Arquivo Brasileiro de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia, 52(4):350-353.

Ogbalu OK, Emelike NJT, Amachree EI, Uche F, Thomas CN, 2005. Characterization and preferred oviposition sites of Atherigona orientalis (Schiner) on Nigerian pepper fruits. Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management, 9(1):19-23.

Ogbalu OK, Umeozor OC, Ebere N, 2005. Oviposition deterrent effect of extracts of neem against Atherigona orientalis (Schiner) on pepper (Capsicum annum) and tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) fruits in Nigeria. Indian Journal of Agricultural Research, 39(1):18-24.

Ogbalu ON, 1989. The susceptibility of pepper fruits (Capsicum species) to oviposition by the pepper fruitfly, Atherigona orientalis (Schiner) in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. Tropical Pest Management, 35(4):392-393.

Pont AC, 1973. Muscidae (house-flies, stable-flies, etc.). In: Smith KGV, ed. Insects and Other Arthropods of Medical Importance. London, UK: British Museum (Natural History), 251-269.

Pont AC, 1992. The world distribution, host range and abundance of Atherigona orientalis Schiner, 1968 (Insecta, Diptera, Muscidae). A report prepared for the Bureau of Rural Resources, Department of Primary Industries and Energy, Canberra, Australia. Information Paper - Bureau of Rural Resources (Canberra), No. IP/1/92:21-65; 17 ref.

Rathore YS, Young WR, 1975. Chemical control of shootfly, Atherigona orientalis Schiner and cutworm, Agrotis sp. on maize. Indian Journal of Entomology, 37(4):406-408

Rodrigues SR, Nantes LR, Souza SRde, Abot AR, Uchôa-Fernandes MA, 2006. Frugivorous flies (Diptera, Tephritoidea) collected in Aquidauana, MS. (Moscas frugívoras (Diptera, Tephritoidea) coletadas em Aquidauana, MS.) Revista Brasileira de Entomologia, 50(1):131-134. HTTP://

Senô KCA, Galli JC, Cividanes FJ, 2004. The population dynamics of Atherigona orientalis (Dip.: Muscidae) associated with guava submitted to two systems from spray of fenthion. (Dinâmica populacional de Atherigona orientalis schiner, 1868 (Dip.: Muscidae) em pomar de goiaba submetido a dois sistemas de pulverização de fenthion.) Revista de Agricultura (Piracicaba), 79(1):21-30.

Suh SangJae, Kwon YongJung, 2016. First finding of a quarantine pest, Atherigona (Acritochaeta) orientalis Schiner (Diptera: Muscidae), in Korea. Entomological Research, 46(3):185-189.

Distribution Maps

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