The CRAMBIDAE were originally included in the family PYRALIDAE, and were first separated out as a distinct group by Munroe in 1972 based on the presence or absence of an organ called the praecinctorium, which when present is a bilobed flimsy structure lying on the mid-line between medially fused tympanic bullae. When absent, the tympanic bullae are quite clearly separated. The former are the Crambiformes, the latter the Pyraliformes. Later, the separate groups were elevated to family status, particularly by Hennig.
The species are listed here in their subfamilies.
The Caterpillars of CRAMBIDAE are very varied in their habits. They are basically a group of concealed feeders, but they also include parasites and aquatic forms.
A key to the caterpillars of pest species in this family has been published.
Frequently Asked Questions about Caterpillars
(updated 8 September 2012)