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Latest Tephritidae Stories

2009-10-22 10:38:34

The Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata, is a world plague which represents one of the most serious problems for agriculture. However, the control methods currently present in the market for this plague are ineffective. The research group of the Institute of Biotechnology of the University of Granada (Spain) has isolated and identified a stump of the genus Bacillus, extremely toxic for larvae of C. capitata. After subjecting such stump to a specific treatment, protected by a patent,...

2009-09-17 14:52:41

Canadian scientists say they've discovered the fruit fly is capable of intricate social learning, much like humans. The McMaster University study found inexperienced female fruit flies, known as Drosophila melanogaster, can learn from their more experienced counterparts, mated fruit flies. The researchers, led by Associate Professor Reuven Dukas and graduate student Sachin Sarin, said they found that when the novices landed on decaying fruit where the mated females had laid their eggs, the...

2009-09-16 10:37:18

A common household nuisance, the fruit fly, is capable of intricate social learning much like that used by humans, according to new research from McMaster University. The study, published online today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, found that inexperienced female fruit flies, known as Drosophila melanogaster, can learn from their more experienced counterparts, mated fruit flies. As part of an ongoing examination of the evolutionary roots of social learning in insects,...

2009-08-01 14:54:38

A Southeast Asian fruit fly has been detected in the Americas for the first time and threatens fruit farms in Southern California. The California Department of Food and Agriculture announced Friday that seven white-striped fruit flies had been found in traps in Los Angeles County. The female flies lay eggs on fruit, especially guava and mango. When the larvae hatch, they tunnel through the fruit, making it unfit for consumption. The state planned to begin putting out traps for the flies...

2009-07-16 14:02:24

There she is again: the cute girl at the mall. Big eyes. Long legs. She smiles at you. You're about to make your move"¦ but wait! What's she wearing? It's a letterman jacket, one clearly belonging to a hulking football player named "Steve." This girl is taken. Wisely, you move on. Countless teen movies have told the same tale, but behind the fiction is an essential, biological reality: Humans base their behavioral decisions, such as whom to court, on cues gleaned from their...

2009-06-30 09:52:58

Many plants protect themselves from hungry animals by producing toxic chemicals. In turn, animals rely on detecting the presence of these harmful chemicals to avoid consuming dangerous plant material. A paper, published in this week's issue of PLoS Biology, investigates the response of an insect to a common plant weapon "“ the toxin L-canavanine. The work, from authors at the Institute of Functional Genomic of Montpellier, finds that the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster can recognize...

2009-04-13 15:41:04

California Institute of Technology scientists say they have trained computers to analyze fruit fly behavior in find a genetic basis for it. The researchers said they have developed a computer program that can analyze aggression and courtship in fruit flies, opening the way for the scientists to perform large-scale, high-throughput screenings for genes that control such innate behavior. The program allows computers to examine a half an hour of video footage of pairs of interacting flies to...

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2009-02-06 09:30:00

This year marks both the bicentennial of Charles Darwin's birth and the 150th anniversary of the publication of his seminal work "On the Origin of Species." Just in time for the Darwin observances, a new paper appearing today in the journal Science by a team led by University of Notre Dame researchers Andrew Forbes, Thomas Powell, and Jeffrey Feder offers important insights into how new species come to be. "This study is important because it shows how biodiversity itself can be a major...

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2009-01-21 15:46:15

Balkan States Consider Sterile Insect Technique Against Mediterranean Fruit Fly Fruit farmers in Southern Europe have been struggling for decades in a losing battle against the Mediterranean fruit fly, or Medfly, which is one of the world's most destructive farm pests, since it lays its eggs in fruit and vegetables. The female can produce up to 800 offspring per season. The larvae or worms feed on the pulp of fruits, tunneling through it, and reducing the fruit to an inedible mush. The...

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2008-11-25 10:43:44

A species of fruit fly from the Seychelles Islands often lays larvae instead of eggs, UC San Diego biologists have discovered. Clues to how animals switch from laying eggs to live birth may be found in the well-studied species' ecology and genes. The fly is one of a dozen species of Drosophila to have recently had their genomes sequenced, information that should provide abundant opportunities for identifying genetic changes that cause females of this species, and not others, to retain their...