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CAPS Non-target - Adult

Paralobesia viteana (Clemens) (Tortricidae: Olethreutinae: Olethreutini)

Common names: grape berry moth

Synonyms: vitivorana (Penthina)

Fig. 1: Male

Fig. 1: Male

Fig. 2: Female

Fig. 2: Female

Fig. 3: Male genitalia

Fig. 3: Male genitalia

Fig. 4: Female genitalia

Fig. 4: Female genitalia

Adult Recognition

FWL: 4.5-6.0 mm

Forewing pattern is similar to other Nearctic species of Paralobesia and Lobesia botrana. Paralobesia viteana can be separated from most other tortricids by the sclerotized lobe projecting off the base of the cucullus in the male genitalia. Females lack signa in the corpus bursae and males lack a forewing costal fold.

Adults can be confused with those of Lobesia botrana, which was discovered in California in 2008-2009. Adults of P. viteana and L. botrana cannot be separated by wing pattern; a genitalic dissection is necessary to confirm identity.

Larval Morphology

Late instar larvae are approximately 10-15 mm long with a yellowish-green to pale-brown abdomen. The head and prothoracic shield are yellowish brown and the shield is variably shaded with dark brown to black on the posterior and lateral margins. An anal comb is present with 5-8 teeth. Chaetotaxy is the same as that of Lobesia botrana.

No morphological characters have been identified to reliably separate the larvae of Paralobesia and Lobesia. Should P. viteana be introduced to the West Coast, or L. botrana expand out of California, molecular diagnostics may be required to identify larvae of Paralobesia/Lobesia found on grape.


Paralobesia viteana completes 2-4 generations per year, depending on location. Adults of the various generations are present March to August.

Females lay eggs on individual grapes, blossoms, and stems. Larvae of the first generation feed on blossoms or small berries, often webbing together entire clusters. Larvae of subsequent generations tunnel into the berries and feed inside, also webbing together clusters. Mature larvae exit the clusters and pupate in a cresent-shaped fold cut into a leaf. Larvae of the last generation may also drop to the ground and pupate in leaf litter. Overwintering occurs in the pupal stage.

Host plants

Grape (Vitis sp.) is the preferred larval host, although several secondary hosts have been documented. This species is the primary lepidopteran pest of grapes in eastern North America.

Family Genus/species Common name
Fabaceae Amorpha L. false indigo
Lauraceae Sassafras Nees & Eberm. sassafras
Rosaceae Rubus L. blackberry
Vitaceae Vitis L. grape
Vitaceae Vitis riparia Michx. riverbank grape


Paralobesia viteana is widespread in grape-growing regions of eastern North America. It has also been recently recorded from vineyards in western Colorado.

This species has not been reported from California or the grape-growing regions of the Pacific Northwest.


Botero-Garces, N. and R. Isaacs. 2003. Distribution of grape berry moth, Endopiza viteana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in natural and cultivated habitats. Environmental Entomology. 32: 1187-1195.

Gilligan, T. M., D. J. Wright and L. D. Gibson. 2008. Olethreutine moths of the midwestern United States, an identification guide. Ohio Biological Survey, Columbus, Ohio. 334 pp.

Gilligan, T. M., M. E. Epstein, S. C. Passoa, J. A. Powell, O. C. Sage and J. W. Brown. 2011. Discovery of Lobesia botrana ([Denis & Schiffermuller]) in California: an invasive species new to North America (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington. 113(1): 14-30.

Isaacs, R., K. S. Mason and E. Maxwell. 2005. Stage-specific control of grape berry moth, Endopiza viteana (Clemens) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), by selective and broad-spectrum insecticides. Journal of Economic Entomology. 98: 415-422.

MacKay, M. R. 1959. Larvae of the North American Olethreutidae (Lepidoptera). Canadian Entomologist Supplement 10: 1-338.

Witzgall, P., M. Bengtsson and R. M. Trimble. 2000. Sex pheromone of grape berry moth (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). Environmental Entomology. 29: 433-436.

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