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South American Fruit Fly

Scientific Name
Anastrepha fraterculus
Scientific Author
(Wiedermann, 1830)
(Diptera: Tephritidae: Trypetinae: Toxotrypanini)
Exotic species - absent from Australia
Exotic species - absent from Australia

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Diagnostic Images

Head Front Image - Female
Ancash, 9 June 1961, Trabago Coll
Sarah McCaffrey Museums Victoria
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Diagnostic Images (9)
Other Images (9)
Diagnostic Notes
This species is of great economic importance because of the wide variety of plants which it attacks and its extensive distribution. In most of South America it probably is the most important species of Anastrepha.

A. fraterculus has a broad host range, particularly in the family Myrtaceae, but it is also a pest of citrus and apples (Malus domestica) in some areas.

Identification to species is very difficult, in particular, it is essential to dissect the aculeus (ovipositor piercer) of a female specimen to achieve positive identification. The adult of A. fraterculus is very difficult to separate from that of A. obliqua; if necessary, specimens should be referred to a specialist. The following description applies to both species.

Colour: scutum without any silvery or hoary patterning; base of scutellum and posterior margin of scutum without a black mark; apical section of vein M (beyond dm-cu crossvein) crossed by an oblique marking; in cell r4+5 this marking often joins the marking on crossvein dm-cu to form an inverted V-shaped band (known as the V-band). Abdomen: aculeus tip serrate and less than 0.18 mm wide; aculeus at most 2.0 mm long. Wing length 5-7 mm.


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Small to rather small, yellow brown. Mesonotum 2.75 to 3.3 mm long, yellow brown; the humerus, median stripe widened posteriorly anterior to acrostichal bristles and barely including these bristles, lateral stripe from transverse suture to scutellum, and scutellum bright yellow; a small diffuse scutoscutellar black spot may or may not be present; pleura yellow and yellow brown; metanotum and postscutellum rather broadly blackened laterally. Macrochaetae yellow brown to black; pile yellow brown. Sternopleural bristle slender.

Wing 5.35 to 7.2 mm long, the bands yellow-orange and brown. As already stated, adult forms currently recognized within the A. fraterculus complex show substantial variation in the wing pattern. In the Brazilian form costal band typically touching S band and V band typically separated from S band.

Ovipositor sheath 1.65 to .1 mm long. stout, tapering apically, spiracles about 0.7 mm from base. Rasper a rather small patch of hooks in 4 or 5 rows. Ovipositor 1.5 to 1.95 mm long, stout, base distinctly widened, tip narrowed beyond end of oviduct and before serrate portion, the serrations blunt and rounded, extending little more than half length of tip, sometimes less.


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More Information
Specimen Contact
Museum Victoria
McCaffrey, Sarah and Ken Walker
05/12/2011 08:12 AEST
Last Updated
31/08/2012 11:13 AEST
McCaffrey, Sarah and Ken Walker (2011) South American Fruit Fly (Anastrepha fraterculus) Updated on 8/31/2012 11:13:04 AM Available online: PaDIL -
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Free for use under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0)