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Tortrixes (Tortricidae)

Tortrixes is a family of small moths comprised of some 400 members in the UK. Resting, most species hold their wings like a roof. In this way they look like very small Owlet Moths. Most species have a wingspan between 10 and 20 mm only. The caterpillar often rolls up a leaf and lives a sheltered life inside. Because of this behaviour they are also referred to as Leaf-rolling Moths, especially in the USA. Not all caterpillars roll up leaves though. Some mine leaves in the early stages of life, others bore into stems of plants or leaves. Some species are very difficult to tell apart, but most can be identified, especially when slightly enlarged. There are many very beautiful species among them.

Clicking on "more" in the caption will take you to a page containing much more information on the species and usually more photographs as well.


photograph of Gypsonoma aceriana
Poplar Shoot Borer (Gypsonoma aceriana)

The Poplar Shoot Borer is characterized by the lack of characteristic markings. The head is not whitish. more...


photograph of Gypsonoma dealbana
Common Cloaked Shoot Gypsonoma dealbana

The Common Cloaked Shoot is not an easy species to identify, but the head is always a bit whitish. more...


photograph of Hedya ochroleucana
Long-cloaked Marble Hedya ochroleucana

Beautiful Tortrix Moth. It is looking the way it does to imitate a bird's droppings. more...


photograph of Hedya nubiferana
Marbled Orchard Tortrix Hedya nubiferana

Some of these Hedya species are very difficult to tell apart. This species is also known as the Green Budworm and scientifically as Hedya dimidioalba. more...


photograph of Acleris variegana
Rose Garden Tortrix Acleris variegana

Looks a lot like the negative of the previous species. Resting on a leaf it too looks like a bird's droppings. more...


photograph of Acleris logiana
Grey Birch Button Acleris logiana

The Grey Birch Button is a small milkish white species with brown markings. Easy identifiable because it has a typical resting position: always very flat to the surface it sits on. more...


photograph of Acleris notana
Rusty Birch Button Acleris notana

The Rusty Birch Button is an extremely variable species. Very similar to the species below and identifiable only when it is dark like this one, for the Rusty Oak Button never is this dark. more...


photograph of Acleris notana
Rusty Birch Button / Rusty Oak Button Acleris notana / Acleris ferrugana

The Rusty Birch Button and the Rusty Oak Button are both whitish with a brown half circle near the upperedge of the wing. You can only tell these species apart by examining the genitals. Even experts often put these two together. more...


photograph of Pammene aurana
Orange-spot Piercer Pammene aurana

The Orange-spot Piercer apparently has three orange spots, but actually each wing has two spots only.more...


photograph of Notocelia uddmanniana
Bramble Shoot Moth Notocelia uddmanniana

Easy to identify because of the big black spot on the wings. more...


photograph of Pale yellow leafroller
Pale Yellow Leafroller, dark specimen Aleimma loeflingiana

In spite of the silver, the Pale Yellow Leafroller is mighty rusty... more...


photograph of Pale yellow leafroller
Pale Yellow Leafroller, light specimen Aleimma loeflingiana

...But the Pale Yellow Leafroller may also be marked with very thin lines only. more...


photograph of Celypha lacunana
Dark Strawberry Tortrix Celypha lacunana

One of the many species with silvry scales. These may look dramatic, but they actually make the animal quite invisible sitting in a tree or shrub with the sun shining through the leaves. more...


photograph of Pseudargyrotoza conwagana
Yellow-spot Tortrix Pseudargyrotoza conwagana

The Yellow-spot Tortrix is another species with silvry scales. Even more beautiful and quite easily identified. more...


photograph of Olethreutes arcuella
Arched Marble Olethreutes arcuella

The Arched Marble is the most beautiful of all Tortrixes.more...


photograph of Cydia splendana
Chestnut Tortrix Cydia splendana

This species is not unlike some others. Its larvae can be found in wallnuts or chestnuts. more...


photograph of Lobesia reliquana
Oak Marble Lobesia reliquana

You can hardly miss this beautiful Oak Marble. more...


photograph of Cochylis nana
Birch Conch Cochylis nana

Another small but easily identifiable species: the Birch Conch. more...


photograph of the Hook-marked Straw Moth
Hook-marked Straw Moth Agapeta hamana

The Hook-marked Straw Moth is a yellowish species, of which the caterpillars live on thistles mainly. more...


photograph of Capua vulgana
Common Tortrix Capua vulgana

Especially the females of the Common Tortrix have very few markings indeed. more...


photograph of Tortrix viridana
Green Oak Tortrix Tortrix viridana

An all light green Tortrix. More...


photograph of Archips oporana
Spruce Tortricid Archips oporana

The chocolate brown Spruce Tortricid is still an unusual Tortrix in the UK. more...


photograph of Archips xylosteana
Brown Oak Tortrix Archips xylosteana

In the genus Archips we find a number of beautifully marked brown tortrix moths. more...


photograph of Archips podana
Fruit Tree Tortrix Archips podana

Beautifully marked, but very notorious tortrix moth. more...


photograph of Cacoecimorpha pronubana
Carnation Tortrix Cacoecimorpha pronubana

The larvae of the Carnation Tortrix may feed on at least 160 species of plants, including olive, avocado and carnation. more...


photograph of Pandemis corylana
Chequered Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis corylana

The Chequered Fruit-tree Tortrix is a small brown Tortrix that differs from the following two species by the fine lines on the upperwing, the open band and the light shoulders. more...


photograph of Pandemis heparana
Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix Pandemis heparana

Similar the the species above and below. Doesn't have the fine lines of the species above. The band is closed and usuallu uniformly dark. The shoulders are smaller and less well marked than in the species below. more...


photograph of the Adoxophyes orana
Smaller Tea Tortrix Adoxophyes orana

The Smaller Tea Tortrix, also known as the Summer Fruit Tortrix Moth, is similar to the species above. It lacks the numerous fine lines of the Chequered Fruit-tree Tortrix and has bigger and better marked shoulders compared to the Dark Fruit-tree Tortrix. more...


photograph of Tortricodes alternella
Winter Shade Tortricodes alternella

The Winter Shade is a rather dull species, almost an exception in Tortrixes. Quite variable, alas. more...


photograph of Dichrorampha acuminatana
Sharp-winged Drill Dichrorampha acuminatana

The Sharp-winged Drill also looks like a dull one at first sight. A close up reveals many unexpected details though. more...


photograph of Ancylis unculana
Buckthorn RollerAncylis unculana

Te Buckthorn Roller may be identified best by looking at its large chocolate brown area near the top of the wing. more...


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This page has last been modified on Sunday, May 28, 2017.
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