The California Department of Food and Agriculture confirmed the detection of two Peach Fruit Flies (PFF) in Palo Alto. The State will be flooding the area with detection traps to monitor the situation and to see if there are any additional flies in the area.
Because two flies were found within 3 miles of each other, the State will treat a 16.4 square mile area using the "male attractant" technique. This technique uses ground-based, spot applications of minute amounts of an organic insecticide, Spinosad, and an attractant lure. The treatment is applied as small, dollar-sized spots on inanimate objects such as street trees and utility poles approximately 8 feet off the ground. The male fruit flies are attracted to these spots because of the lure and die from feeding on the mixture. The treatments are applied at heights that are typically inaccessible and cause minimal disruption to the public.
The Peach Fruit Fly is an exotic insect pest found throughout much of Asia. PFF is a pest of over 50 different kinds of fruits and vegetables including citrus, grapes, stone fruits, apples, pears, avocado, pepper, and tomato.
These infestations are likely the result of contraband fruit smuggled into California. We ask all Californians notto bring fruit or vegetables back from your travels. Exotic fruit flies impact not only our multi-billion-dollar agricultural industry, but threaten California’s native and urban environments.
For more information about the Peach Fruit Fly, you can visit the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s website: https://www.cdfa.ca.gov/plant/pff/regulation.html