Taking an environmentally sensitive approach to pest management

Missouri Pest Monitoring Network
Spotted Wing Drosophila I.D.

Spotted Wing Drosophila adult male

Identification of fly
(stage attracted to and captured in traps)

  • Spotted Wing Drosophila (SWD) is a medium-sized fruit fly, generally about 0.08-0.12 inches long.
  • Female flies (right) have a prominent, serrated and saw-like egg-laying device on their hind end that inserts eggs into ripe fruit.
  • Adult male flies have a black spot near the leading edge of each wing tip and have two sets of black combs, which appear as bands on their front legs.

Spotted Wing Drosophila larvae

  • Both SWD and the common vinegar fly have red eyes and an amber-colored body. Careful examination is needed to prevent confusing SWD with common vinegar flies. It is highly advisable to use a 30X magnifying glass, small hand lens or head-mounted magnifier to more easily see the key characteristics described above. Being able to look at flies under a stereomicroscope will greatly aid in ability to accurately ID female SWD.


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REVISED: October 26, 2015