Providing practical information to help you protect your farm from biosecurity risks

Summerfruit pests


High priority exotic pests

The following are some of the key exotic pests of summerfruit, identified in the development of the Industry Biosecurity Plan for the Summerfruit Industry. Any of these pests would have serious consequences should they enter and become established in Australia. For a complete list of exotic pests of summerfruit, contact Summerfruit Australia for a copy of the industry biosecurity plan.

The climate of Australian summerfruit production regions would allow each of these pests to survive, spread and establish should they be introduced. Additional information on each of these pests is included in the fact sheets.

Implementing biosecurity measures to control endemic pests will go a long way towards preventing exotic pests from entering and becoming established on your farm.

Plum pox virus

plum pox virus-0660072

Plum pox potyvirus. European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization Archive,

  • Also known as Sharka, the virus affects numerous Prunus spp.
  • Symptoms are highly variable but may appear on trunks, leaves or fruit
  • Leaves may show chlorotic spots, bands or rings and vein clearing
  • Fruit or stones can look mottled or spotted
  • Trunks can split and fruit may drop prematurely
  • Spread locally by aphids
  • Dispersed long distance through infected propagation material

Fact sheet

Brown rot

apple brown rot

Monilinia fructigena. Photo by University of Georgia Plant Pathology Archive,

  • Infects a range of fruit trees and berries
  • Fruit rapidly develop firm, brown spots that progress into rotting
  • Rotting areas covered by creamy-white pustules, often in circles
  • Infected fruit can mummify on the tree
  • Blighted twigs with cankers can also develop
  • Young fruit turn from green to violet, followed by fruit drop

Fact sheet

False codling moth

false codling moth-1265036

Cryptophlebia leucotreta. Tertia Grove, Institute for Tropical and Subtropical Crops,

  • Wide host range
  • Moth is up to 20 mm and has a triangular mark on the outer part of the wing with a crescent shaped mark above it
  • Larvae are up to 15 mm long with red-pink bodies and yellow-brown heads
  • Larvae mine just beneath the fruit surface causing premature ripening
  • Larvae spin cocoons which can be seen in soil or debris under trees
  • Dispersed long distances in fruit infested with larvae

Fact sheet

Plum fruit moth

plum fruit moth

Cydia funebrana. Photo by Magnus Gammelgaard,

  • Causes up to 50% yield loss in Europe
  • Adult moths have dark grey-brown forewings with four short black dashes near wing tips.
  • Larvae are 10-12 mm long with red-pink bodies and dark heads
  • Larval entry holes in fruit exude sticky gum
  • Young fruit turn from green to violet, typically followed by fruit drop
  • Dispersed long distances in fruit infested with larvae

Fact sheet

Spotted winged drosophila (Drosophila suzukii)

Spotted winged drosophila

Photo by John Davis

  • Attacks a range of soft skinned fruit
  • Egg deposition and larval feeding can occur in maturing, firm fruit
  • Flies are 2-3 mm long with yellow-brown colouring, dark bands on the abdomens and red eyes
  • Males have a dark spot on the tip of their forewings
  • Larvae feed in fruit, are cream coloured and about 3 mm long
  • Secondary infections can occur at egg laying sites, leading to fruit rot
  • Flies spread by flight or longer distances in infested fruit

Fact sheet

Oriental fruit fly complex

Oriental fruit fly complex

Bactrocera papayae, B dorsalis and B carambolae. Photo by Scott Bauer


  • Includes Oriental, Papaya and Carambola fruit flies
  • Found in Asia, Papua New Guinea, the Pacific, South America
  • Adults 6-8 mm long with a narrow brown band along edge of wings
  • Flies are similar to a number of other endemic species
  • Larval feeding can result in fruit rot and may cause fruit to drop, resulting in up to 100% fruit loss

Fact sheet

Plum curculio

Plum curculio-1949055

Conotrachelus nenuphar. Photo by E. Levine, The Ohio State University,

  • Major pest of summerfruit in North America
  • Weevils are 5 mm long, grey-brown with four pairs of ridges on the forewings
  • Adult weevils lay eggs causing scarring and wounds on fruit
  • Larval feeding causes internal fruit damage resulting in fruit drop
  • Dispersed long distances in fruit infested with larvae

Fact sheet