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An Unwelcome Arrival

I have been identifying a few specimens for Simon Young who is looking at the invertebrates of Cliff End Wood near Fairlight and recently I came across this little lady, a spotted wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii). The spot is only found in the male (it's on the end of the wing) and this one is a female with clear wings. This is another recent addition to the British list (it's originally from Asia), with the first record in 2012, but a somewhat unwelcome one as the larvae have the potential to be a serious pest of soft fruits.

The female uses the modified last segment of her abdomen, the oviscapt (below, also one of the main features used to identify this species), to pierce the skin of the fruit and then lays her eggs in the resulting hole, the larvae then developing within. In addition to commercial fruits, D. suzukii will also feed on native species such as blackberry so there is also the potential for an adverse effect on the wider countryside. 

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