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CAPS Primary Target - Adult
Port Interception Target - Larva

Crocidosema aporema (Walsingham) (Tortricidae: Olethreutinae: Eucosmini)

Common names: bean shoot moth

Synonyms: opposita (Epinotia)

Fig. 1: Male

Fig. 1: Male

Fig. 2: Male genitalia

Fig. 2: Male genitalia

Fig. 3: Female genitalia

Fig. 3: Female genitalia

Adult Recognition

FWL: 6.5-8.0 mm

Adults are sexually dimorphic. The male forewing is mostly brown to reddish brown with a pale dorsum and large costal patch. The female forewing is mostly pale with a dark patch on the dorsum. Males have several secondary sexual structures including a forewing costal fold and black scaling on the hindwing.

Male genitalia are characterized by a short triangular uncus, large triangular socii, and a parallel-sided cucullus. Female genitalia are characterized by a pair of rounded pockets on sternum VII and a large rounded corpus bursae with two signa.

Other species of Crocidosema, including the cosmopolitan C. plebejana, may appear similar. Most individuals of Crocidosema plebejana have a distinctive white ocellus and white patch on the dorsum of the forewing. The male cucullus is enlarged and subtriangular, and the pockets on the female sternum VII are developed into two lobes or "flaps" in  C. plebejana.

Larval Morphology

For information on the larva of Crocidosema aporema, please consult the fact sheet and keys on LepIntercept - An identification resource for intercepted Lepidoptera larvae.


Crocidosema aporema completes 4-6 generations per year, with at least two generations occuring on soybean. Adults can be present year-round and are most common between April and November in South America.

Females lay eggs on glabrous nodes of the soybean plant or other leguminous host. Early instar larvae feed primarily on terminal buds, folding or rolling the young leaflets. Later instars may tunnel into stems, floral buds, and pods. Pupation occurs in the soil or in rolled leaves.

Larval feeding leads to reduced plant height, drying of terminal shoots, a decrease in lower pod insertion, and damage to flowers, all of which can result in reduced yields in soybean and other crops.

Host plants

Crocidosema aporema is a major pest of soybean (Glycine max) and cultivated beans (Phaseolus spp.) in Central and South America. While larvae feed primarily on Fabaceae, they have also been recorded on cotton and corn.

Family Genus/species Common name
Fabaceae Cicer arietinum L. chick pea
Fabaceae Erythrina crista-galli L. crybabytree
Fabaceae Glycine max (L.) Merr. soybean
Fabaceae Glycyrrhiza glabra L. cultivated licorice
Fabaceae Lens culinaris Medik. lentil
Fabaceae Medicago L. alfalfa
Fabaceae Medicago sativa L. alfalfa
Fabaceae Melilotus Mill. sweetclover
Fabaceae Phaseolus coccineus L. scarlet runner
Fabaceae Phaseolus vulgaris L. kidney bean
Fabaceae Vigna luteola (Jacq.) Benth. hairypod cowpea
Fabaceae Vigna Savi cowpea
Fabaceae Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp. blackeyed pea
Fabaceae Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp. ssp. unguiculata southern pea
Malvaceae Gossypium hirsutum L. upland cotton
Poaceae Zea mays L. corn


Crocidosema aporema is distributed throughout Central and South America. It is also likely present in southern Mexico (most recent records are from Chiapas in 1981) and the Caribbean. Five specimens were collected in Brownsville, Texas in 1941 (and possibly others in 1944). There are no recent U.S. records for this species (J. Baixeras pers. comm. 2013).


Altesor, P., V. R. Horas, M. P. Arcia, C. Rossini, P. H. Zarbin and A. Gonzalez. 2010. Reproductive behaviour of Crocidosema (Epinotia) aporema (Walsingham) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae): Temporal pattern of female calling and mating. Neotropical Entomology. 39: 324-329.

Arneodo, J., G. Quintana and A. Sciocco-Cap. 2010. Biology and morphometrics of the immature stages of Epinotia aporema on artificial diet. Pesquisa Agropecuaria Brasileira. 45: 221-223.

Pereyra P. C. and N. E. Sanchez. 1998. Effects of different host-plant species on growth, development and feeding of the bud borer, Epinotia aporema (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in La Plata, Argentina. Revista Chilena de Historia Natural. 71: 269-275.

Photo Credits

Figs. 1-3: Joaquin Baixeras Almela, Universitat de Valencia

Tortricids of Agricultural Importance by Todd M. Gilligan and Marc E. Epstein
Interactive Keys developed in Lucid 3.5. Last updated August 2014.