Journal of Pest Science

, Volume 87, Issue 4, pp 559–566 | Cite as

Tracking the invasion of the alien fruit pest Drosophila suzukii in Europe

  • A. Cini
  • G. Anfora
  • L. A. Escudero-Colomar
  • A. Grassi
  • U. Santosuosso
  • G. Seljak
  • A. Papini
Rapid Communication


Biological invasions are a leading threat to native wildlife, human health and food production worldwide. Understanding the invasion history helps identifying introduction pathways and organizing integrated management strategies especially aimed at avoiding multiple reintroductions. We coupled a recently developed spatial analysis (Geographic profiling) with trade flows quantification to identify the most likely spreading centre of a recent invader of Europe, the spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii. This polyphagous vinegar fly recently colonized western countries, where it is heavily threatening fruit production causing severe economic losses. Characterized by a rapid spread and a huge impact, the invasion of this pest has a few precedents and it is becoming a model in invasion biology and pest management. Thanks to our spatial approach based on data presence of D. suzukii in European countries in the very first years of it spread, we update the current knowledge of a first spread in Spain and Italy, suggesting on the contrary that the South of France may be the most likely spreading centre of D. suzukii in Europe. Estimates of propagule pressure (fresh host fruits importation) support this finding as imports from contaminated South East Asian countries are higher in France than in Spain or Italy. Our study provides a first step in the comprehension of invasion history of this pest species and emphasizes geographic profiling as an efficient technique to track down invaders colonization patterns.


Biological invasion Spotted wing drosophila Fruit fly Invasive species Geographic profiling 



This work has been possible, thanks to the Phytosanitary administration of the Republic of Slovenia and the Department of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, Food and Environment of the Catalan government. The authors wish to thanks Catherine F. Haut for the manuscript language revision. AC was granted by Fondation Fyssen. AC, AP conceived and designed research; AC, AEC, AG, GA, GS collected data; AC, AP and US analyzed data; AC wrote the manuscript; all authors read and approved the manuscript.

Supplementary material

10340_2014_617_MOESM1_ESM.doc (2.5 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 2575 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Cini
    • 1
    • 7
  • G. Anfora
    • 2
  • L. A. Escudero-Colomar
    • 3
  • A. Grassi
    • 2
  • U. Santosuosso
    • 4
  • G. Seljak
    • 5
  • A. Papini
    • 6
  1. 1.Laboratoire Ecologie and Evolution UMR 7625Université Pierre et Marie CurieParis Cedex 05France
  2. 2.Research and Innovation Centre and Technology Transfer CentreFondazione Edmund MachSan Michele all’adigeItaly
  3. 3.Institute for Food and Agriculture Research and Technology (IRTA), Sustainable Plant Protection, Mas Badia Experimental StationGironaSpain
  4. 4.Department of Clinical and experimental MedicineFlorenceItaly
  5. 5.Department for plant protectionAgriculture and Forestry Institute Nova GoricaNova GoricaSlovenia
  6. 6.Department of BiologyUniversity of FlorenceFlorenceItaly
  7. 7.CRA – ABP Consiglio per la Ricerca e la Sperimentazione in AgricolturaCentro di Ricerca per l’Agrobiologia e la PedologiaFlorenceItaly

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