Home / Tortrix Moth (Tortricidae) / European Grapevine Moth (Lobesia botrana)

European Grapevine Moth (Lobesia botrana)

The European grapevine moth is a member of the family of tortrix moths. As the larvae hollow out the fruits of the plants they feed on, leaving their excrement behind, they are considered a huge pest in vineyards.

These moths are indigenous to southern Italy, but their population eventually spread to southern, and central Europe and even in areas outside it, including the Middle East, Africa, and parts of Asia. Certain Argentinian provinces like Concordia, and Cafayate has managed to successfully eradicate these moths.

Scientific Classification

  • Family: Tortricidae
  • Genus: Lobesia
  • Scientific Name: Lobesia botrana

In October 2009 it was first detected in California’s Napa Valley, but the state finally rid themselves from these invasive species in 2016.

European Grapevine Moth


Description and Identification


The larvae has a yellowish-green to light brown body and a light yellow head. They reach up to 0.8-0.9 cm in length.

European Grapevine Moth Caterpillar



Pupation takes place inside a silk cocoon, and the pupa appears brown.

European Grapevine Moth Pupa


Adult Moth

Sexual Dimorphism: Present

The females are a little larger than their male counterparts.

Color and Appearance

Forewing: When the wings are opened, their surface is covered with gray, tan brown, or dark brown blotches and patches. The blotched pattern remains visible when the wings are closed.

Hindwing: When the wings are opened, they are gray with fringes near the body. When the wings are closed, the fringed pattern can still be seen.

Average wingspan: 1.2 -1.3 cm

Flight pattern: Erratic

Season: Early spring to midsummer

Lobesia botrana



The lentil-shaped small eggs measuring 1 mm, are yellowish at the onset, turning gray later. A female moth can produce over 300 eggs in her lifetime, laying around 35 eggs daily.

European Grapevine Moth Egg


Quick Facts

Other NamesEuropean grape worm, European grape moth, European vine moth
DistributionNative: Southern Italy; also found in Anatolia, North Africa, the Caucasus, and Southern Europe
Invasive: Japan, Argentina, Chile, parts of North America, mainly California
Habitat Vineyards
Lifespan of Adults1-3 weeks
Host PlantsPrimarily grape and spurge laurel. Also, European blackberry, European olive, European plum, golden kiwifruit, pomegranate, and wild cherry
Adult DietDoes not feed

Did You Know

  • The Austrian duo of lepidopterist Johann Nepomuk Cosmas Michael Denis and naturalist Ignaz Schiffermüller first described this species in 1775.
European Grapevine Moth Picture


European Grapevine Moth Image


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