EPPO Global Database

EPPO Reporting Service no. 04 - 1996 Num. article: 1996/63

Situation of Bactrocera carambolae in Suriname, Guyana and French Guiana

Bactrocera carambolae (EPPO A1 quarantine pest) originates from south-east Asia but is now also present in French Guiana, Guyana and Suriname. B. carambolae was first found in Suriname in 1975, but was not identified until 1981. In 1981, it was considered as being a Dacus species, and in 1986 as Dacus dorsalis. Further studies revealed that it was not Bactrocera (Dacus) dorsalis but a close relative and the name carambola fruit fly was given. In 1994, Drew and Hancock revised the B. dorsalis complex and the name B. carambolae was proposed (see EPPO RS 95/049).

Surveys have been carried out by the Ministries of Agriculture respectively since 1986 in Suriname and 1987 in Guyana. Cooperation between the two countries started in 1993 and was extended to include French Guiana in 1995.
  • In Suriname: B. carambolae was first found in the district of Paramaribo and Saramacca, and surveys soon revealed that the fruit fly occurred throughout most of the coastal area. It was then found in the Coronie district but is still absent from the Nickerie district. In the interior of the country, it is present up to Brokopondo Lake and in some villages along the Coppename, Wayambo and Corentyne rivers. High levels of populations were observed ;in Apura and Washabo, along the Corentyne river.
  • In Guyana: since 1993, B. carambolae has been found occasionally in the villages of Siparuta and Orealla in the upper Corentyne river area, near Apura and Washabo (cities situated in Suriname).
  • In French Guyana: B. carambolae is present throughout the coastal area of French Guiana and in some isolated villages in the interior of the country. It has been found along the Oyapuk river, which forms the border with Brazil.
During these surveys, the following information was also gathered on host plants.
Major hosts: carambola (Averrhoa carambola), Curacao apple (Syzygium samarangense).
Minor hosts: West Indian cherry (Malpighia punicifolia), mango (Mangifera indica), sapodilla (Manilkara achras), guava (Psidium guajava) and Indian jujube (Zizyphus jujuba).
Occasional hosts: cashew nut (Anacardium occidentale), star apple (Chrysophyllum cainito), sour orange (Citrus aurantium), grapefruit (C. paradisi), tangerine (C. ;reticulata), sweet orange (C. sinensis), Suriname cherry (Eugenia uniflora), moendoe (Garcinia dulcis), golden apple (Spondias cytherea), Malay apple (Syzygium malaccense) and tropical almond (Terminalia catappa).
Studies have also been conducted on wild forest fruits but until now no forest fruits have been found infested by B. carambolae. However, traps placed in forest areas of French Guiana have consistently detected low numbers of fruit flies.

To control B. carambolae, the male annihilation technique has been tested in Suriname and Guyana for several years with reasonable success. The authors considered that based on their experience of the past seven years, the spread of B. carambolae can be expected to other countries in South America, Central America and the Caribbean if no action is taken. They felt that a regional eradication programme based on the male annihilation technique should be implemented while the distribution of B. carambolae is still limited.


van Sauers-Muller, A.; Vokaty, S. (1996) Carambola fruit fly projects in Suriname and Guyana.
CARAPHIN News, IICA, no. 13, 6-8.