- Author: Chris M. Webb
A significant pest of plants, crops, and trees, the light brown apple moth Epiphyas postvittana (Tortricidae) is an invasive pest that is native to Australia.
At 8 to 10 mm (1/4 inch) long, these pests are smaller than a dime, but can do much damage.
Females typically lay eggs on the upper surface of host leaves; however, eggs are sometimes laid on fruit and young stems. The egg masses contain on average 20 to 50 eggs, but may contain up to 170.
Larva are usually present on the leaves of host plants most of the year. Just hatched larvae are 1.5 to 2mm long. They are pale yellow-green with a dark brown head. Mature larvae are 10 to 18 mm long. At this life stage they are a medium green, with a light yellow-brown head with a darker green central stripe. Sometimes two side stripes run the length of their bodies.
Pupae are 10 to 15 mm in length. They turn from green to reddish-brown as they mature. A single pupa can often be found inside a thin, silken cocoon between a webbing of two leaves pulled together.
To find out more Please visit the USDA’s light brown apple moth website. Additional information and photos can be found on this page of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) website.To report suspected finding please follow these online instructionsor call the CDFA pest hotline at 1-800-491-1899.