June 13, 2024

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Creating a buzz around ‘fly farming’ – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

EU-funded scientists have delivered new knowledge on the synthetic mass-rearing of specified species of flies. The findings are specially well timed considering the fact that European laws lately opened the door for some farmed fly species to be employed as feed in the aquaculture sector.


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© Sergio Yoneda #235299032, resource:stock.adobe.com 2020

Flies are a vital element of the ecosystem – they supply meals for other animals, pollinate plants and recycle organic and natural squander. The possible of these lowly but vital insects has been known for some time and a amount of species are by now staying reared commercially.

Their use in Europe is increasing soon after an EU Regulation was handed in 2017 permitting the use of insect proteins from a number of fly species – which includes the black soldier fly and housefly – as feed in aquaculture. Flies by now supply a protein resource in some pet food items and could quickly be employed to feed poultry and pigs.

The EU-funded FLYHIGH venture has supplied new knowledge about the make-up and lifestyle cycles of specified fly species. A single critical task was to take a look at the genetic variety of reared and normal populations of the black soldier fly, which is one particular of the most commercially significant insects all over the world.

In their DNA

‘We carried out the most complete black soldier fly sampling that we are knowledgeable of and employed the findings to produce a complete library of mitochondrial DNA sequences linked to geographic details,’ suggests Aino Juslén, venture coordinator dependent at the University of Helsinki, Finland. ‘These success will be significant to current and upcoming programmes for the synthetic rearing, choice and intense manufacturing of the black soldier fly.’

The DNA sequences have been uploaded to the publicly accessible database GenBank.

Additionally, the FLYHIGH team observed approaches to improve rearing protocols for specified fly species. Researchers examined how things these kinds of as temperature, humidity and food plan can influence on fly progress. As effectively as the black soldier fly, the venture assessed rearing procedures for other artificially reared species, which includes the housefly and the eco-friendly bottle fly.

As a consequence, new larval feeding methods have been created and the performance of specified strains of fly species has been evaluated on different progress mediums. The improved synthetic-rearing protocols for both the housefly and eco-friendly bottle fly increased maggot exercise and produced flies much more efficiently and sustainably.

Highlight on species

Beneath laboratory circumstances, FLYHIGH also studied the lifestyle cycle of flies with different positions in the meals chain, these kinds of as hoverflies and blow flies, which includes their close interactions with specified plants. The two species groups could have apps in normal ecosystems or agricultural environments as plant pollinators or to support decompose organic and natural squander.

‘We documented the certain necessities for just about every studied species group to survive in synthetic-rearing circumstances and ultimately reproduce in captivity,’ explains Juslén.

The venture collected details for fly species distributed in Mediterranean ecosystems of South Africa and Europe. New host plants had been recorded for some species, these kinds of as certain bulb plants like lilies and aloe succulent plants. The findings uncovered that the volume of ingested pollen for fly survival different noticeably among the studied species.

This venture was funded by means of the EU’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions programme which supports coaching of scientists and staff exchanges. The venture delivered an active agenda of knowledge transfer by means of tutorial visits, coaching programs, fieldwork and scientific seminars.