Unnoticed sojourners at retail fruit outlets - Away from orchards, stray female mango fruit flies, Bactrocera dorsalis leisurely search for egg laying sites
Tephritid fruit flies’ induced damage in several commercial fruits is quite noticeable and usually inflicted at the orchard prior to harvest. The present study highlights the egg laying behaviour of these frugivorous tephritid flies in urban environment. Surveillance at retail outlets viz., super markets, road side fruit vending push carts as well as fruit shops revealed the presence of actively foraging stray female fruit flies, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel) hovering on ripe mango fruits to offload their eggs, thereby attending to the unattended job. Unaware of this ‘fruit fly inflicted damage at retail outlet’, consumers often pick the fruits loaded with the fruit fly eggs or early stage maggots. These flies
display an opportunistic behaviour in salvaging the fragmented resources in an urban setup. Their ability to survive in the highly modified niches of an urban environment is quite amazing and worth exploring.
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