Annona is a natural insecticide to fruit flies

Several species of Annona (Annonaceae) were tested as natural means of managing the spotted-wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii). The Brazilian research team found that the extracts were fairly effective insecticides that could inhibit the ability of the fruit fly to lay eggs on strawberries.

The study was supported by the Research and Rural Extension Company of Santa Catarina. Its results were published in the journal Industrial Crops and Products.

  • Seeds from the Annona species A. mucosa, A. muricata. and A. sylvatica were processed to create ethanol extracts. All seed extracts were applied onto strawberry fruits at discriminatory concentrations before being exposed to spotted-wing drosophila.
  • The extracts caused different levels of mortality on the fruit flies that came into contact with the treated fruit. The A. mucosa formula achieved mortality rates above 85 percent, which was comparable to the conventional chemical insecticide spinetoram.
  • Furthermore, the fruit flies were only able to lay much smaller numbers of eggs on the strawberries protected by Annona extracts.
  • Trichopria anastrephae is a parasitoid that targets fruit flies. When they ingested LC90 level of the A. mucosa seed extract via contact with spotted-wing drosophila, they suffered a 33 percent mortality rate.
  • Exposure through direct contact caused 70 percent mortality among the T. anastrephae. However, any parasitoid that survived exposure did not display vastly different behavior from normal ones.

The researchers believe that the seed extract of Annona mucosa can be used as a natural insecticide in organic farms that are plagued by spotted-wing fruit flies and other pests.

Find out more ways to use Annona mucosa in your organic farm or garden at

Journal Reference:

Bernardi D, Ribeiro L, Andreazza F, Neitzke C, Oliveira EE, Botton M, Nava DE, Vendramim JD. POTENTIAL USE OF ANNONA BY PRODUCTS TO CONTROL DROSOPHILA SUZUKII AND TOXICITY TO ITS PARASITOID TRICHOPRIA ANASTREPHAE. Industrial Crops and Products. 18 September 2017;110:30–35. DOI: 10.1016/j.indcrop.2017.09.004.

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