1. Spotted wing drosophila (SWD; Drosophila suzukii Matsumura, 1931) is a polyphagous invasive crop pest native of Southeast Asia able to attack a wide array of host plant species in both cultivated and natural habitats. SWD is now widespread in several mountain regions, but it is still unclear how the species moves to different elevations across the seasons, and how this depends on environmental conditions and food resources. 2. The temporal dynamics of several SWD populations were studied along elevational gradients in the Alps using a synchrony analysis. Twelve transects were selected, covering an overall elevational gradient of 2100 m. SWD abundance was monitored every 2 weeks during the growing season (from June to November 2015) when cultivated and wild hosts are potentially susceptible (i.e. fruits are ripe). 3. Spotted wing drosophila were widely distributed along all the tested elevations, revealing synchrony in population dynamics across ranges in elevation and geographic distance. Synchronised populations were observed at distances of up to 100 km at sites with similar temperatures. The high dispersal potential of the pest together with the seasonal variation in temperature are likely to be the dominant mechanisms causing the observed spatial synchrony. A factor that seemed to reduce synchrony is the large concentration of host plants (i.e. crop) in lowland agricultural landscapes. 4. The spatial synchrony in pest abundance at large spatial scale indicates that the risk of SWD outbreaks is highly dependent on drivers beyond the control of traditional field-scale management. These findings could help in developing monitoring and predictive models of SWD population dynamics.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.