The mediterranean fly ( capitate keratitis ) is one of the worst garden pests. This dipteran has the annoying habit of laying its eggs inside the pulp of fruits, causing serious damage to the summer harvest.
We have already described this insect in the specific article on the fruit fly, which we advise you to read because it details the habits and the damage caused by the parasite. Now let’s move on to one of the best biological defense systems against flies, which deserves to be studied in depth: the Tap Trap and Vaso Trap food traps.
Capture can be used to find out if the insect is present or not in the area, but above all to capture individuals in order to reduce their presence. The method is particularly interesting from the point of view of organic farming, since it does not involve the use of phytosanitary treatments.
Mass surveillance and capture
Fruit fly trapping can be used with two purposes: surveillance or mass capture . Monitoring is very useful for identifying the presence of Diptera in the orchard, allowing only carry out treatments when they are really necessary it also allows considerable savings.
Without traps, it is not easy to see the flies and the risk is not to notice their presence until harvest time, when the damage is done and the insect larvae are already in the pulp of the fruit which will rot inexorably. This is why vigilance is important. The most accurate system for doing this is the pheromone trap.
mass capture it is rather a method to reduce the population of ceratis capitata without using insecticides. If applied early and correctly, it can limit the damage to a negligible extent. Food traps are used for this purpose. Efficiency increases if the garden can be better monitored and neighbors also participate.
Types of fly traps
Several types of fruit fly traps can be used: the chromatographic trap the pheromone trap and the food trap .
Pheromones are a very useful system for monitoring ceratitis capitata but due to its cost, it is a system generally used in large-scale cultivations.
The system chromotropic exploits the fly’s attraction to the color yellow, and has the great defect of I am not selective . Traps of this type can be used for less precise monitoring than pheromones, but on the other hand it is simpler and cheaper. However, chromotropic traps are not used for mass trapping. They should not be used during flowering or they will end up trapping good insects as well, such as the all-important pollinators.
For this reason, the best system for capturing ceratitis capitata is definitely food bait which by using an attraction that only affects flies will not trap insects, leaving pollinators to work and protecting bees.
How the food trap works
The food trap is as simple as it is ingenious: it consists of a container filled with a liquid “bait”, containing substances that the insect likes and a lid that clings to the mouth of the container. trap cover allows the fly to enter but not exit.
The Tap Trap is designed to attach to plastic bottles, it attaches to common 1.5 liter bottles, while the Vaso Trap model is used with glass jars, such as 1 kg honey jars, and no Bormioli. Both devices are also equipped with a hook to hang on the branches of fruit plants and are made in yellow, to combine the appeal of food with color.
fruit fly bait
Fruit fly in nature research ammoniacal substances and proteins so if we provide a bait that contains these elements, it will be an irresistible attraction for Diptera.
The best proven recipe is based on ammonia and raw fish . Ammonia is common ammonia, which is used in house cleaning, as long as it is not flavored with additional essences, while waste such as sardine heads can be used for fish . For each one and a half liter bottle, you need to calculate half a liter of bait.
best method to attract the fruit fly is to go out a few weeks before with a simpler trap with water and sardines. This attractor will catch house flies and the presence of dead insects in the liquid will make it more attractive. After catching a few flies we insert the ammonia and at this point we are ready to catch ceratitis capitata.
The trap may remain in the orchard until the end of the season , since each capture increases the protein degree of the attraction. It is enough to check the level of the liquid once every 3-4 weeks, empty it a little (without throwing away dead flies and fish) and fill it with ammonia, keeping about 500 ml per bottle.
The period for placing the traps
Mediterranean fly traps should be placed for june , it is very important to intercept the flies of the first generations. Like many insects, in fact, even the ceratitis capitata reproduces very quickly, so it is essential to catch the threat in time.
The capture of a few individuals in the first months is worth as much as a trap full of insects in late summer.