All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

 

Diptera - Fruit flies


Zonosemata electa (Say)


Photograph by Jeffry Lotz - FDACS/DPI

Kingdom:

Phylum:

Class:

Order:

Family:

Animalia

Arthropoda

Insecta

Diptera

Tephritidae

Animals

Arthropods

Insects

Flies

Fruit flies

  


 

SPECIES DESCRIPTION

Size: robust, 8.0-10.5 mm from antennae to tip of wings.
Wing pattern: with oblique brown stripes, the basal two parallel and the apical two joined along the leading edge of the wing as shown in photo.
Body color: orange-ish with bright yellow stripes around edges of thorax; abdomen with two black spots laterally near apex.
Oviscape: concolorous with abdomen, about 0.5 mm long, tapered to a broadly truncate tip.

Photographs:

Zonosemata electa, Adult male, Cades Cove, August 2002, Photograph by Jeffry Lotz - FDACS/DPI.
Solanum carolinense, Host for Zonosemata electa, Cades Cove, August 2002, Photograph by Gary J. Steck.

Similar species:

 No other species of this genus have been found in GSMNP. Other striped-wing brown/orange-bodied tephritids such as Rhagoletis suavis may be superficially similar but should not be confused with this species.

DISTRIBUTION:
(GSMNP in green)

Widespread throughout the eastern US.

 

 

 In Park:

Cades Cove and The Purchase. Z. electa is likely to be widespread throughout GSMNP wherever its host is found.

 

 HOST PLANTS:

 Solanum carolinense L. (Solanaceae)

 
Solanum carolinense L.
Photograph by Gary J. Steck.

 NATURAL HISTORY

 Habitat:

 Open fields and meadows wherever the host occurs. Wide range in elevation from Cades Cove to The Purchase.

Phenology

 Apparently univoltine. Adults have been collected throughout the summer into September. Larvae emerged from fruits of the host to pupariate in the soil with adults emerging the following spring/summer.

 Breeding and Courtship:

 Not observed.

 Oviposition and Immature Stages:

 Females oviposit into green fruits and the presence of immature stages may not be apparent externally. Larvae feed to maturity inside the fruit and exit after the fruit turns yellow and begins to dry out.

 Predators and Parasites:

Unknown.

 Community Ecology:

Unknown.

 CONSERVATION BIOLOGY:

Populations of this fly depend on maintenance of its host plant populations, which, in turn, require regular disturbances to maintain open meadows and edges along forests and roadsides.

 Special Protection Status:

- Rangewide: None

- In Park: All plants and animals are protected within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Collection requires a permit which is usually granted only for research or educational purposes.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

 Text:

Gary J. Steck, Ph.D., Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Gainesville
Bruce D. Sutton, Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Gainesville

Photographs:

Jeffry Lotz, Division of Plant Industry, Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, Gainesville
Gary J. Steck, Ph.D., Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Gainesville

Web Page Development:

Bruce D. Sutton, Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Gainesville

 

REFERENCES

Foote, R. H., F. L. Blanc, and A. L. Norrbom. 1993. Handbook of the fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) of America north of Mexico. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, New York, 571 pp.

GLOSSARY

oviposition - The act of laying eggs.
oviscape - The hardened sheath enclosing the needle-like ovipositor, or egg-laying structure, of female tephritid flies.
puparium - The hardened, cocoon-like structure, unique to Diptera, which develops from the cast 3rd instar skin, within which metamorphosis from pupa to adult takes place.
univoltine - Having one generation per year.


Please send any questions or comments to G. J. Steck or B. D. Sutton

Last Updated: September 3, 2002