European Grapevine Moth FAQs

What Does the European Grapevine Moth (EGVM) Look Like?

The adult male European grapevine moth, lobesia botrana, has creamy white forewings with a pale-yellowish overlay and deeply bluish-gray coloring. Black, yellow and light olive-brown markings are moderately defined and spread across the wing. The hind wing is white with weak scales and a dark gray sub-basal line. The forewing of the female is similar in coloration and markings. However, the hind wing of the female is completely dark gray.

The larvae of the European grapevine moth have a yellowish brown head and an abdomen varying from yellowish green to whitish brown or brown, and can grow to approximately 9-10 mm long. The body can be completely translucent, leaving the gut visible. Larvae have short and retracted antennae.

When was the European Grapevine Moth First Found in the United States?

The European grapevine moth was first confirmed in California in September 2009.

Where is the European Grapevine Moth Currently Found in the United States?

The European grapevine moth is currently found in California. Other grape-growing states, and those with stone fruit and other potential host plants, are at risk from European grapevine moth. For a map showing current quarantines and high risk areas, visit the Pest Tracker.

What Types of Plants Does the European Grapevine Moth Infest?

The European grapevine moth favors grapes and other berries but the host list includes cherry, cucumber, ivy, lilac, nectarine, olive, pomegranate and rosemary.

What Kind of Damage Can the European Grapevine Moth Cause?

The European grapevine moth can feed on the flower or fruit of host plants, most often grapes. If the moth attacks mature grape clusters, for example, the berries can become further damaged through infection of a fungus called botrytis, also known as bunch rot. This causes a decay of plant tissue and possible death. The second and third generations are the most economically damaging, as they directly and severely affect mature berries through larval feeding.

Are Quarantine and/or Eradication in Place for the European Grapevine Moth?

Federal and State officials impose agricultural quarantines for the pest as appropriate. Areas of California are under both State and Federal quarantine for European grapevine moth, which are generally within an area already regulated for light brown apple moth. You can see the Pest Tracker for a general overview of the federal quarantines and high risk areas.

What Methods are Used to Control the European Grapevine Moth Population?

A variety of methods are used singly or in combination to eliminate European grapevine moth. These methods include fruit removal, organic treatments, chemical treatments and mating disruption. Mating disruption reduces EGVM’s population over time. For more information on pest management techniques, visit the Pest Management page.

What Can We Do?

Do not bring or mail fresh fruits, vegetables, plants or soil into the United States or your state unless agricultural inspectors have cleared them. Never remove fresh produce from your property when your area is under quarantine for any pest. It's also important to cooperate with any quarantine restrictions or rules that might be imposed because of a European grapevine moth find in your area, and allow authorized agricultural workers access to your property to inspect fruit and traps for signs of an infestation.