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Pests in the Northeastern United States

Editors: W.T. Wilsey, C.R. Weeden, and A.M. Shelton

Cabbage Maggot (Delia radicum) - Life Cycle
Click for larger image Adults:
Cabbage maggot flies resemble houseflies but are only about half as long, 1/4 inch (6 mm). They are dark gray with black stripes along the body. Adults emerge between late March and early May. There are 3-4 generations per year.
Eggs:
The cabbage maggot fly deposits its eggs on or in the soil at the base of the plants. The eggs are white and elongated. Eggs hatch into maggot larvae in 3 to 7 days.
Larvae:
The legless maggots are tapered and white in color, and are usually less than 1/3 inch (6 mm) in length. The head is the pointed end and at the rear or blunt end they have 12 short, pointed fleshy processes arranged in a circle around two button-like spiracles. Newly hatched larvae feed and burrow into the roots. The crucifer-damaging life stage, maggots feed for about 3 to 5 weeks before pupating in the root tunnel or in the soil.
Pupae:
The pupa is brown in color, egg shaped and 1/4 inch (6 mm) long. Pupae remain in the soil for 2 or 3 weeks before adult emergence.

Damage inflicted by cabbage maggot on cabbage and crucifers


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Maintained by Jason D. Plate. Last updated Mar. 8th, 2007.