Cacoecimorpha pronubana

Cacoecimorpha pronubana (Hübner)

Taxonomic placing: Insecta, Holometabola, Lepidoptera, Tortricidae

Common name: European carnation tortrix.

Geographical distribution: Europe, the United Kingdom, the Mediterranean basin, North and South Africa and North America. CIE Map #340, 1975.

Host plants: Polyphagous.

Morphology: The forewings of the adult are yellow-brown, with rectangular brownish transverse bandsthe The hindwings pinkish with dark edges, body length about 7-8 mm. The fully grown larva is dark-green with a brown head, about 15-20 mm long.

Life cycle: Each female produces about 150-600 eggs and 4-6 annual generations are completed in the Mediterranean region.

Economic importance: The larvae feed at the point where fruits touch and bore under the surface and within avocado fruit. They penetrate the buds of carnation flowers, excreting webs that prevent flower opening, thus making them look swollen. Citrus fruits may be mined, although the pulp is avoided. damage appears as dark-brown spots on the skin, reducing marketability. On olives the larvae bind terminal leaves or buds with webs and fed between these them. Ornamental plants may be attacked in greenhouses. In Turkey C. pronubana is considered to be a potential important pest. In Europe it is an A2 quarantine pest.


Monitoring: The sex pheromone of the female is used for monitoring. Pest presence can be seen by white webs that it excretes.

Chemical control: A single application of a pyrethroid controlled the pest in Sicily, but this is so far unnecessary in the Middle East.

Biological control: The endoparasitoid Elacherus lateralis Spinla (Eulophidae) attacks the pest in Israel.Preparations of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) were tried against the pest in various regions.


Inserra, S., Calabretta, C. and Garzia, G.T. 1987. Attacco di Cacoecimorpha pronubana (Hbn.) su gerbera e rosa in coltura protette e possibilitàdi lotta chimica e biologica. Difesa delle Piante 10: 97-100.

Kaçar, G. and Ulusoy, M.R. 2008. A new pest of olive trees: Carnation tortrix, Cacoecimorpha pronubana (Hübner), 1796-1799 (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in the Eastern Mediterranean Region of Turkey. Türkiye Entomoloji Dergisi 32: 211-223. (In Turkish with an English summary).

OEPP/EPPO. 1980. Data sheets on quarantine organisms No. 104, Cacoecimorpha pronubana. OEPP/EPPO Bulletin 32: 267-275.

Quaglia, F. 1993. Populations dynamics of tortricids (Cacoecimorpha pronubana (Hb.) and Epichoristodes acerbella (Walk.)) on ornamentals, with special reference to the potential use of sex-pheromones for monitoring, mass-trapping and mating disruption. Frustula Entomologica 16: 1-7.

Swirski, E., Wysoki, M. and Izhar, Y. 2002. Subtropical Fruits Pests in Israel. Fruit Board of Israel (in Hebrew with an English Summary).

Witzgall, P. 1990. Attraction of Cacoecimorpha pronubana male moths to synthetic sex-pheromone blends in the wind tunnel. Journal of Chemical Ecology 16: 1507-1515.

Wysoki, M. 1989. Bacillus thuringiensis preparations as a means for the control of lepidopterous avocado pests in Israel. Israel Journal of Entomology 23 119-129.