Myiopardalis pardalina (Bigot)
(Also known as Carpomya pardalina Bigot)
Taxonomic placing: Insecta, Holometabola, Diptera, Nematocera, Tephritidae.
Common name: Baluchistan melon fly.
Geographical distribution: Mediterranean region to the Black Sea, Indian subcontinent. CABI map #124 (2013).
Morphology: Head and thorax orange-yellow with black spots, abdomen grey, wings with transverse yellow-grey bands. Body length 5-7 mm. Fully-grown maggots about 11 mm long.
Host plants: Various cucurbits, including cucumber, melon and watermelon.
Life history: The female inserts a few eggs into each host-fruit, wherein the maggots develop, then drop to the soil to pupate and pass the winter. Emergence begins in the spring as cucurbit flowers start to set fruit. Each female mates several times and deposits 150-200 eggs. The adults are very susceptible to low humidities during periods of hot weather. A generation requires about 4 weeks, the pest usually raising 4 generations in the Middle East, from May to October.
Economic importance: This pest is a quarantine risk to temperate countries where melons are grown, including North America and Southern Europe. In Pakistan it may damage up to 50-80% of the crop, especially of the thin-skinned fruits. Part of the injury is due to rot that affects infested fruits. In the Middle East the fly is a minor, occasional pest of melons and watermelons.
Horticultural methods: Collection and destruction of infested fruits, which may be identified by exit-holes. If these fruits are to be placed in the soil, they should be buried deeply (at least 75 cm) and the surface treated with an insecticide. Sanitation and removal of weeds around cucurbit fields are essential. Baits of protein hydrolysate were also sometimes effective.
Chemical control: Pyrethroids like deltamethrin, augmented with sugar, and carbamates, applied by dusting the soil surface, provided the best results. The borders of fields and the
surrounding vegetation should also be treated with insecticides. Baits of a protein hydrolysate augmentated with an insecticide and sugar provided lowest infestation rates and the highest yields in Pakistan.
Abdullah, K., Latif, A., Khan, S.M. and Khan, M.A. 2007. Field test of the bait spray on periphery of host plants for the control of the fruit fly Myiopardalis pardalina Bigot (Tephritidae: Diptera). Pakistan Journal of Entomology 9: 91-94.
EPPO RS 2013⁄128. Myiopardalis pardalina (Diptera: Tephritidae) Baluchistan melon fly.
Gabeielith-Shpan, R. 1962. Bionomics of Myiopardalis pardalina Bigot on sweet melons in Israel. Proceedings of the XI Internationaler Kongress für Entomologie 2: 39-42.
Stonehouse, J., Sadeed, S.M., Harvey, A. and Haiderzada, G.S. 2006. Myiopardalis pardalina in Afghanistan. Proceedings of the 7th International Symposium on Fruit Flies of Economic Importance. From Basic to Applied Knowledge pp. 01-12.