family tortricidae


Tortricidae is a family of moths in the order Lepidoptera. They are commonly known as tortrix moths. It is a large family with over 6,300 species described, and is the sole member of the superfamily Tortricoidea. Many of these are economically important pests. Olethreutidae is a junior synonym. The typical resting posture is with the wings folded back producing a rather rounded profile.

Some common Tortricids

The Tortricids include many economically important pests, including :-

See also Mexican jumping bean moth (Cydia deshaisiana)

A typical tortricid - the Codling moth

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 favoured, timed carefully to catch the hatching larvae before they can bore into the fruit.


  • Firefly Encyclopedia of Insects and Spiders, edited by Christopher O'Toole, ISBN 1-55297-612-2, 2002

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