— A Florida fruit fly larva that feeds on crab meat was captured after it was captured eating a dead crab, and a Florida fruit moth was captured biting into a dead insect.
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said the fruit fly and moth, both found in Florida, are both in the larval stage and could be harmful to people and pets.
“We’re very concerned about them because of the number of people that have been injured from these,” said Kim Mardle, director of the state department of agriculture and consumer services.
Mantenna larvae feed on the flesh of crabs and live in the fleshpots on their bodies, eating other live crabs and other invertebrates.
If a crab is eaten by a moth, it can cause the moth to eat the flesh and grow into a large, brown, adult fruit fly.
This moth has been reported in other parts of the United States and has been found in the wild in Florida.
It is believed to be the first larval type to feed on live crabs, Mardl said.
Once they feed on a live crab, they can live for months without eating.
They can live a month or two in the air, Mardsle said.