Mar 3, 2021
Webinar highlights organic management of spotted wing drosophila

Join eOrganic for a new webinar on the latest updates on organic management of spotted wing drosophila (SWD). The webinar takes place on March 9, 2021, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. The webinar is free and open to the public, and advance registration is required.

spotted wing drosophila
Spotted wing drosophila. Photo: Hannah Burrack, North Carolina State University/

SWD has emerged as a devastating pest of small and stone fruits worldwide. Losses due to SWD can be as high as 100% and have been valued more than $718 million annually in the U.S. The zero tolerance for SWD in fresh fruit has led conventional growers to make preventative insecticide applications when fruit are ripe. Organic management of SWD is even more challenging due to the low number of effective OMRI-approved materials and limited understanding on the biology of SWD to translate into non-chemical management tactics.

A multi-regional team was funded by USDA-NIFA through OREI Award No. 2018-51300-28434 to develop, evaluate and implement systems-based organic management programs for SWD. This webinar will provide a comprehensive update on organic management of spotted-wing drosophila. It will summarize findings of the research conducted by our project team on organically approved strategies including behavioral, cultural, biological, and chemical tactics to manage SWD.

Presenters include:

  • Dr. Ash Sial (University of Georgia), blueberry entomologist at the University of Georgia and project director for the SWD Organic Management grant funded by USDA-NIFA through OREI.
  • Dr. Kent Daane (University of California Berkeley), Extension specialist at UC Berkeley with a focus on classical and augmentative biological control. He is known for his work on biological control of SWD.
  • Dr. Elena Rhodes (University of Florida), fruit entomologist and works on behavioral management techniques to control spotted-wing drosophila.
  • Dr. Gabriella Tait (Oregon State University), fruit entomologist and works on cultural control strategies for spotted-wing drosophila.
  • Steve Van Timmeren (Michigan State University), fruit entomologist and works on chemical control and resistance management strategies for spotted-wing drosophila.
  • Leah English (University of Arkansas), agricultural economist and develops production budgets and interactive economics-based tools to aid farmers with production and pest management decisions.
  • Dr. Kay Kelsey (University of Georgia), impact evaluation specialist and works with farmers and researchers to develop tools to evaluate impact of research and extension projects.

For more information and to register, visit

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