Morphological – adult
- a medium sized species
- face fulvous with a pair of medium sized circular to oval black spots
- postpronotal lobes and notopleura yellow
- scutum black with large areas of red-brown centrally and anterocentrally
- lateral and medial postsutural vittae present
- yellow spot anterior to mesonotal suture in front of lateral postsutural vittae
- mesopleural stripe reaching midway between anterior margin of notopleuron and anterior npl. seta
- scutellum entirely yellow
- wing with a narrow dark fuscous costal band overlapping R2+3 and expanding into a distinct apical spot and broad dark fuscous anal streak
- cells bc and c colourless
- microtrichia in outer corner of cell c only
- abdominal terga III-V fulvous with a black ‘T’ pattern and anterolateral corners of terga IV and V with broad black markings; posterior lobe of male surstylus short
- female with apex of aculeus trilobed (Drew and Romig 2013).
Morphological – larvae
See White and Elson-Harris 1992 p. 273.
PCR-RFLP Test 1
BsrI: Data not available
HinfI: Data not available
HhaI: Data not available
Sau3AI: Data not available
SnaBI: Data not available
SspI: Data not available
Vspl: Data not available
PCR-RFLP Test 2
Data not available.
Zeugodacus tau - Abdomen Dorsal Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Abdomen Ventral Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Entire Fly Dorsal Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Entire Fly Dorsal with Wings Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Entire Fly Lateral Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Head Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Legs Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau - Right Wing Classic TAU006
Zeugodacus tau - Scutum Pattern Classic China TAU005
Zeugodacus tau -Abdomen variation TAU003
Zeugodacus tau - Abdomen variation THAILAND TAU007
Zeugodacus tau - Entire Body Lateral THAILAND TAU007
Zeugodacus tau - Leg variation TAU002
Zeugodacus tau - Leg variation THAILAND TAU007
Zeugodacus tau - scutum variation THAILAND TAU007
Zeugodacus tau - scutum variation TAU003
Bactrocera tau has been recorded on 34 hosts from 9 families including Curcurbitaceae, Fabaceae, Loganiaceae, Moraceae and Myrtaceae, Oleaceae, Sapotaceae and Vitaceae (for a full list of recorded hosts see Allwood et al. 1999).
Major commercial hosts:
- Cucumis melo (melon)
- Cucumis sativus (cucumber)
- Cucurbita maxima (giant pumpkin)
- Luffa acutangula (angled luffa)
- Manilkara zapota (sapodilla)
- Momordica charantia (bitter gourd)
- Psidium guajava (guava)
India, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Vietnam, Southern China, Taiwan, Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, East Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia, Bangladesh (Drew and Romig 2013, Leblanc et al. 2014).
Bactrocera tau is a very common species throughout southeast Asia. It is an economic pest species, mainly in cucurbit crops, but can be misidentified as it belongs to a complex of closely related species.
The tau-complex includes Zeugodacus species with a black scutum, wings colourless except for a costal band and cubital streak, cells bc and c colourless or with an extremely pale tint, costal band overlapping R2+3 and expanding into a distinct spot at apex.
Bactrocera tau is distinct in having an entirely yellow scutellum, abdominal terga III-V with a distinct dark ‘T’ pattern and all femora with dark preapical spots (Drew and Romig 2013).
Previously known as Bactrocera (Zeugodacus) tau until Zeugodacus was elevated to genus level by Virgilio et al. 2015. Now known as Zeugodacus (Zeugodacus) tau. For a full list of Zeugodacus species see DeMeyer et al. 2015.
- A major pest of cucurbit crops