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Codling moth

Did you spot a pest in your apple or pear orchard? The codling moth Cydia pomonella causes considerable losses in your orchard crops. What’s causing all these problems? The larvae, the so-called caterpillars, of this moth damage the fruit. Fortunately, biological control can help you out!

What damage can codling moths cause?

  • The larvae make brown-rimmed holes in the skin of the fruit and make a tunnel to the core to feed on protein-rich seeds.
  • In the tunnel the caterpillars lay brown, granulated excrements called frass.
  • Damaged fruit ripens earlier and falls off resulting in yield losses.
  • One larvae can damage several fruits.

How to control codling moths?

To monitor the caterpillars of the codling moth, you can rely on specific pheromones combined with a trap such as the Delta Trap®.
For biological control, you can introduce the beneficial nematodes Carpocapsae-System.

What are the characteristics of codling moths?

  • The eggs of 1 mm are white, lens-shaped and are laid in a sticky mass produced by the females.
  • The recently hatched larvae of 2 mm are pale yellow. Full-grown larvae are about 2 cm, reddish and have a black head. They pupate in a silken cocoon covered in wood material.
  • Adults measure about 10 mm and are greyish with pale grey and copper-coloured stripes on their wings.

What about the codling moth’s life cycle?

  • 3 to 6 days after emerging, females lay eggs on the leaves and fruit. They lay about 50 to 60 eggs.
  • After 1 to 3 weeks, depending on the climate, the eggs hatch and the young larvae start to penetrate fruits.
  • Caterpillars leave the fruit by the end of the summer and hibernate in fissures on the tree trunk, branches, rocks or fence posts.
  • Adults will be present from late spring till late summer. Even in early autumn adults can occur at temperatures above 15 °C/59 °F.
  • Next spring the larvae pupate and a new generation will be present.

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