back to HYPP Zoology home page

Coleophora hemerobiella Scopoli
Eupista hemerobiella

Insecta, Lepidoptera, Coleophoridae .

Fruit tree case moth

Description, Biology, Life Cycle, Damage, Common Names, Images

- Adult: size 10 to 14 mm wingspan. The wing tips are pointed, the fore wings are shiny dark grey-brown, the hind wings, dark grey with a long fringe. The moth often has a metallic sheen (*) .
- Larva: the caterpillar, length 5 mm is brown, with a dark brown head. The abdominal prolegs are greatly reduced. The first case the caterpillar forms around itself is often pistol-shaped (*) , curved at the upper end or straight, like a cigar. The summer case is straight and approximately 18 mm in length; it is attached perpendicularly to the leaf.
- Egg: small, oval, more or less flattened. They are usually laid in clusters of 5 to 10 eggs along the veins on the underside of wild woody plants.

- Host plants: apple, cherry, plum, blackthorne and hawthorn.
- Adult: the moth flies from June to July. The female lays a maximum of 200 eggs, singly or in clusters on the underside of leaves.
- Egg: Embryonic development lasts approximately two weeks.
- Larva: the caterpillars emerge at the end of summer. They start to feed immediately. At first, they mine the leaf and later, attack it from the edges for a few days. Before the leaves fall in autumn, the caterpillars construct a hibernaculum using a strip of the leaf epidermis and silk threads which they spin. The caterpillar hibernates in this case near the buds, on the fruit or in the fork of branches.
In spring the hibernaculum is enlarged and becomes cone-shaped. Gripping with its thoracic legs the larva moves by crawling and cuts a hole round itself in the leaf. In autumn, the caterpillar, still in its hibernaculum, reaches a branch or stem, attaches itself with a silken thread and hibernates.
The following spring it disposes of its old hibernaculum and constructs a larger one, straight in shape, in which it pupates in June, without further feeding.

[R]Life Cycle
- One generation every two years.
- The egg hatches approximately two weeks after laying in summer; the caterpillar feeds until autumn, then hibernates, feeding again the following spring. It hibernates once more before pupating in June, the moth emerges two weeks later.

The caterpillars excavate round or rectangular mines in leaves, without causing deformation (*) . In spring they devour part of the buds and the young leaves. If they emerge very late, buds are severely damaged and the crop may be reduced. autumn damage is insignificant. This insect pest rarely causes major damage.

Widespread in Central and Northern Europe, Russia and Asia Minor.

[R]Common Names
DE: Sackträgermotte, Sackträgerraupe, Futteralmotte ES: Coleófora de los frutales FR: Coléophore des arbres fruitiers IT: Bruco astuccio dei fruttiferi PT: Coleóforo GB: Fruit tree case moth

[R] Images

  1. Coleophora hemerobiella Scopoli (Coutin R. / OPIE)
  2. Coleophora hemerobiella Scopoli (Coutin R. / OPIE)
    Damage on leaf of apple Mined areas on the underside of the leaf around the feeding hole of the larva, the larva protecting itself in a case.
  3. Coleophora hemerobiella Scopoli (Coutin R. / OPIE)
    Case fixed to apple

To read this page in French

HYPPZ on line : Species (scientific name), Pests (common names), Glossary, Crops.

back to HYPP Zoology home page