Apple Moth and Vine Moth - UPDATE 2/11/2009

While out checking vineyards this week Light Brown Apple Moth (LBAM) have been recorded. It is worthwhile assessing our vineyard now for signs of LBAM. Look for any flower parts that are stuck together. Apple moth damage is usually found in ‘hotspots’. If you find one damaged bunch like this check other bunches and in nearby leaves for more LBAM activity.

Light Brown Apple Moth.

How many LBAM grubs are a problem? 

LBAM caterpillars, or grubs cause damage to bunches which later leaves them much more susceptible to botrytis infection and spread. Also in high numbers apple moth reduce the yield of your block – which for high value fruit may become an issue. For low value fruit this may be less of an issue. The damage is terms of dollars of grapes at harvest is not as significant because the fruit eaten by the LBAM caterpillars is not as valuable.

We have also seen this week some large Vine Moth caterpillars (below).

Vine Moth caterpillar.

Are Vine moth a problem? 

Vine moth caterpillars generally only eat leaves and unless they are found in very high numbers they are not a significant pest. Be careful in young vineyards.

Seek advice- inform your winery and if necessary, apply a biological insecticide such as BT®, Prodigy®, Avatar®, Entrust®, Proclaim® or Success 2® and check labels for details.

Cost of control per hectare varies from $30-$50 per hectare for BT's, Proclaim, Prodigy, Avatar and Success 2. The BFA organically registered product Entrust is the most costly per hectare at approximately $80 per hectare.

Broad-spectrum insecticides are no longer registered for apple moth control.

Remember Prodigy can only be used up to 80% capfall and only BT’s can be used after berries reach peasize (EL 31). For some vineyards 80% Capfall will occur within 14 days.


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