On September 7, 2017, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed European cherry fruit fly (Rhagoletis cerasi, or ECFF) in Youngstown, Niagara County, New York. APHIS, in collaboration with state and tribal cooperators, trapped 22 ECFFs from 14 sites mainly in state and public lands along the Niagara River. APHIS and the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (NYSDAM) are assessing the confirmed detections and planning response and regulatory actions.
During 2015 and 2016, APHIS confirmed ECFF in Ontario, Canada from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), in several locations, including one along the Canada-U.S. border across from Niagara County, New York. In response APHIS, NYSDAM, and the Tuscarora Nation initiated delimitation trapping in Niagara County and increased ECFF surveys throughout upper New York in July 2017. During August, program staff sent several suspects to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) and APHIS for identification. APHIS and PDA confirmed the detection of adult ECFF. Staff did not find larvae during the survey. The detection sites are scattered along the Niagara River area mainly in “wild lands” or state parks bordering Canada. The hosts are wild cherry and honeysuckle species. No commercial cherry orchards are affected.
ECFF is the most serious pest of cherries in Europe. Damage associated with this pest is caused by larval feeding in the fruit pulp, which can result in losses of up to 100 percent if left uncontrolled. The ECFF has one generation a year and are now likely dormant, as pupae in the soil, since there are no larval hosts available this time of year. The emergence of the next generation of ECFF from soil is closely timed with host fruits. APHIS and New York cooperators continue with the final survey and trap screening efforts, as well as program discussions and planning for additional response and regulatory actions.