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Speckled green fruitworm

Orthosia hibisci (Guenée)
Lepidoptera: Noctuidae

O. hibisci: The adult is grayish beige with two purplish gray spots on its wings and a hairy thorax (A). The eggs are laid on the upper surface of the leaves. The larva is yellowish green with numerous whitish flecks, and three longitudinal white stripes along the dorsum (B).

Distribution

Mainly southeastern Canada and northeastern US to the mid-Atlantic states.

Damage

Attacks all deciduous tree fruits. Larvae feed on young leaves (C) and dig tunnels in buds and young fruit (B), often leaving a symmetrical round hole; fruit drop when the core is injured, or otherwise remain on the tree and develop corky scars (D).

Similar Species

Many other fruitworm species are present in the region, but most are similar in appearance (green, with dots, dashes, lines or stripes of white, cream or yellow) and all can be considered as members of the "green fruitworm" complex. These also include Lithophane antennata (Walker), Widestriped green fruitworm; Amphipyra pyramidoides Guenée, Humped green fruitworm; Lithophane baileyi Grote, Bailey green fruitworm and Himella fidelis Grote, fourlined green fruitworm.

Management

Use of broad-spectrum or selective (e.g., Bacillus thuringiensis) insecticides, if necessary, before or after bloom.

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