Insect inside pears

Asked September 17, 2016, 5:41 PM EDT

Our two very old pear trees have not been sprayed for decades. They produce lots of pears but when cutting open the fruit, most all have been attacked by insects. They seem to bore a single hole from the outside and the center where the seeds should be are filled with little black things. Are these eggs or is this the remnants of them chewing up the seeds? What is the insect and what/when should I spray? Except for the insect, the pears are great. Thank you.

Gilliam County Oregon

1 Response

Thanks for your pear insect question! Your pears seem to have become a home and food for the pear-codling moth. Since the pears over-winter as larvae in cocoons in bark, in the soil and in thrash at the base of your trees, it is imperative that you rake up everything that falls from the tree, as well as other brush and debris nearby, and destroy them. Otherwise, your fruit will suffer the same fate next year.

Here's a link to the diagnostic and treatment chapter of the OSU pest management book. Please read about pest monitoring and management mechanisms. You might want to check to see if your county's extension office has any information on moth populations, if recorded through their pheromone trap system.

Good luck!