Arcola malloi (Pastrana, 1961)
Alligator Weed Stem Borer
(previously known as Vogtia malloi)
PHYCITINAE ,   PYRALIDAE ,   PYRALOIDEA
 
Don Herbison-Evans
(donherbisonevans@outlook.com)
and
Stella Crossley


(Photo: courtesy of the University of Florida)

This Caterpillar feeds on

  • Alligatorweed ( Alternanthera philoxeroides, AMARANTHACEAE ).

    The eggs of this moth are laid on a growing shoot, and the caterpillars eat their way into the stem.


    (Photo: courtesy of USDA-ARS)

    The adult moth is pale brown with dark markings. It has a wing span of about 3 cms. Its life cycle is approximately 6 weeks.


    (Photo: courtesy of CSIRO/BIO Photography Group, Centre for Biodiversity Genomics, University of Guelph)

    This species occurs naturally in South America, including

  • Argentina,
  • Bolivia, and
  • Uruguay.

    In 1971 it was introduced deliberately to control Alligator weed into

  • U.S.A. in Florida and Georgia, and later into Alabama and North Carolina.

    In 1977, for the same reason, it was introduced into Australia, and now occurs in

  • Queensland, and
  • New South Wales.


    Further reading :

    Ian F.B. Common,
    Moths of Australia,
    Melbourne University Press, 1990, p. 73.

    Mic Julien, Alejando Sosa, Richard Chan, Shon Schooler, and Guadalupe Traversa,
    Alternanthera philoxeroides (Martius) Grisbach - Alligator Weed,
    in: Jim Cullen, Mic Julien, and Rachel McFadyen (eds),
    Biological Control of Weeds in Australia,
    Csiro Publishing, 2012, pp. 43-47.

    D.M. Maddox,
    The bionomics of a stem borer, Vogtia malloi (Lepidoptera: Phycitidae), on alligatorweed in Argentina,
    Annals of the Entomological Society of America,
    Volume 63 (1970), pp.1267-1273.

    Josť A. Pastrana,
    Una nueva Phycitidae (Lep.) parasito de la "lagunilla",
    Revista de Investigaciones Agricolas Buenos Aires,
    Volume 15 (1961) p. 268.


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    (updated 11 September 2008, 9 March 2017)