1. News

Remote Solar Traps to detect Fruit Fly

Chander Mohan
Chander Mohan

Pests can have adverse and detrimental impacts on agricultural production. They can cause problems by damaging the crops and food production, parasitizing farm animals and causing health hazard to human beings. Fruit fly is one amongst them and is considered a big threat to many fruits and vegetables. To eradicate the problem of fruit fly, the agri scientists are looking for new ways.

Now with the introduction of the high end tools, just like camera and the sensors, new trap has been developed which is working with the remote and the solar power is also used.  

The Agricultural and Livestock Service, SAG, continues its fight against the fruit fly (Ceratitis capitata). Currently, it is using remote solar traps, equipped with a camera and autonomous climate sensors, to detect this dreaded agricultural pest in real time and optimizing resources. The experimental plan was presented in the commune of Pica by the Regional Minister of Agriculture, Fernando Chiffelle and the Director of the Tarapaca region SAG, Sue Vera, who supervised the installation of 35 of these experimental traps. 

Unlike their insect cousins wasps, spiders and mosquitoes, fruit flies don’t sting or bite. The main risk they pose to humans is exposure to the diseases and bacteria the flies spread by moving throughout the home. While fruit files spend the majority fo their time on fermenting food, they also make the occasional pit stop on plates, cutlery, drinking glasses and even toothbrushes. While you may not consume the contaminated produce itself, when you eat or drink from these objects, you’re exposed to the same bacteria the fruit fly has transported from site to site.  

Approximately 48 million people a year get sick as a result of food borne illness. Due to the overwhelming increase of large-scale food recalls, research has determined that fruit flies are a significant vector of Escherichia coli (E. coli), a dangerous food-borne health hazard to humans in the developed and undeveloped world. When you find yourself facing an infestation, eradication isn’t optional – it’s necessary. 

While fruit flies are drawn to fruit due to its sugar content, anything containing sugar will do. As sugar ferments, it begins to turn into alcohol, which fruit flies love. (Another reason you’ll often find them buzzing around beer bottles and hovering around wine glasses.) Removing sources of attraction from the home is a good first step to resolving a fruit fly issue, but may not be enough to completely resolve the problem. When produce becomes scarce, fruit flies will often move on to sink drains, garbage disposals, empty bottles and cans, garbage bags, recycling bins, compost piles and even damp mops and sponges, perpetuating the problem.  

The Regional Minister of Agriculture of Tarapaca, Fernando Chiffelle, said "we are incorporating technology that will allow us to, for example, send information by phone to know what kind of fly was caught in these new traps, optimizing important human resources, as officials won't have to go to extreme locations to check the traps in person." 

Marco Muñoz, the head of the Plant Health Department of the SAG said, "this pilot plan has a statistical design that was created with the help of the University of Chile, to validate the sensitivity of this trap and to compare it with a traditional Jackson trap." 

"The device is made up of a Jackson trap that was placed on a platform that has photovoltaic cells in its upper base so that it has the autonomy to work. It has a temperature and humidity sensor and a camera to take pictures, so that an algorithm identifies if the insects captured are fruit flies or other kinds of insects; thus allowing us to make a quick diagnosis. This type of tool allows us to explore its use for other quarantine pests for our country," Muñoz said. 

The authorities made a positive balance of the application of the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT). It has been carried out in Pica since the beginning of the year and more than 48 million sterile males have already been released to prevent this pest from reproducing. As a result, to date, no wild specimens have been detected in this oasis.

Finally, the authorities asked citizens not to enter banned products of vegetable or animal origin into Chile, nor to consume food from contraband, as this is the way that pests and diseases that could seriously affect the country's agriculture and environment enter the country. 

Like this article?

Hey! I am Chander Mohan. Did you liked this article and have suggestions to improve this article? Mail me your suggestions and feedback.

Share your comments

Subscribe to our Newsletter. You choose the topics of your interest and we'll send you handpicked news and latest updates based on your choice.

Subscribe Newsletters