The trip to the fruit fly farm was really interesting. It is actually a place where they grow fruit flies and distribute them around the world. As part of a scientific research program, the organization grows and develops fruit flies that are sterile to try and control the outbreak of fruit fly infestations in various agricultural areas.
Where the men and boys are separated from the women!

If you look close, you can see the larva in the mix.

6 mililiters of eggs gives close to 1 million larva.

The larva on the drying shelves.

After the eggs are produced, they are heated up to 80 degrees which kills off the females. The males then are grown until the larva stage and then kept dormant for sterilization and shipping. It takes 5 days from the egg to the shipping room. The eggs are in a mixture of peat and mulch and fed a nice sugar and grain diet.
The food bank for the larva!
The larva are colored and packed after they are sterilized with a radioactive material and dried and shipped to the US (Florida and California) and other agricultural zones in Guatemala and South America.

Webpage design and production and photographs by Cathleen L. Carpenter Photography - copyright 2012

page last updated 4/28/2012