|Tortricid Moth - Phaneta raracana |
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Live adult moth photographed in the wild at DuPage County, Illinois. Size: 7mm
The family Tortricidae is considered a monophyletic group (all species share a common ancestor not shared with species in other families) of "microlepidoptera". Likewise, the three subfamilies of Tortricidae (Tortricinae, Olethreutinae, Chlidanotinae) are considered monophyletic, although the relationships among these three continue to be debated.
Some species of Tortricidae are pests of agriculture (e.g.. Codling moth, Cydia pomonella, in apples & walnuts) and forestry (e.g. Spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana).
Tortricidae is considered to be the single most important family of insects that feed on apple, both economically and in diversity of feeding found on fruit, buds, leaves and shoots. In New York state, no less than 17 species of Tortricidae have gained pest status in regards to apple production.
The Codling moth Cydia pomonella is the species which causes worm-holes in apples. It has been accidentally spread from its original range in Europe and is now found in North and South America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand wherever apples are grown. Control has required the use of the harshest available insecticides - historically lead arsenate and DDT were used. These chemicals brought considerable environmental dangers, and in any case the insect gradually developed resistance to them. Currently organophosphate sprays are favored, timed carefully to catch the hatching larvae before they can bore into the fruit. -- From Wikipedia
Order Lepidoptera: Moths. Unlike the butterflies, moths are usually nocturnal. Many moths and their caterpillars are major agricultural pests in large parts of the world. Moths in the family Tineidae are commonly regarded as pests because their larvae eat fabrics, clothes and blankets made from natural fibers such as wool or silk. Moths in the genus Farinalis feed on stored grain, flour, corn meal and other milled grain products.
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