The Peachtree Borer is sexually dimorphic. Females are black with a thick, bright orange band around the abdomen that covers two body segments. Males are more slender and have narrow yellow bands around the abdomen that are sometimes hidden when the body is curved. They also have yellow on their legs and thorax. This moth is a member of the Clearwing family, so both sexes have wings that are transparent, though females' wings are filled in a bit with black. Both male and female are strikingly similar to wasps. They are active from May to September.
As the name suggests, the caterpillar for this moth bores into tree trunks of peach trees, but it also uses nectarine, almond, cherry, and plum trees as host plants. It is destructive in many orchards, so preventing and managing the insect is imperative for tree health and productivity. Signs of larval activity can be seen at the base of the tree trunk where root-feeding activity occurs. Brown jelly-like mush forms where holes were made, and a large amount of it may be visible at the soil level. Sawdust left from chewing wood may also accumulate at the base. A variety of strategies are used to protect trees from infestation as well as damage such as the application of chemical sprays, manually destroying larvae, and trapping adults before they mate. While most healthy adult trees can tolerate a small presence, young saplings can die if infested. Check fruit trees throughout the year for holes in the trunk and moth activity. While only one generation is produced each year, the feeding occurs throughout autumn and winter.
General Characteristics Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns.
Territorial Map U.S., Canada, and Mexico
Prince Edward Is.
Butterfly and Moth Anatomy
Antennae: Butterflies and Moths have a pair of antennae on the head used for sensing.
Head: The head is home to the insect's eyes, antennae, and proboscis.
Thorax: Home to the three pairs of legs as well as vital internal organs.
Abdomen: Contains vital internal organs such as the heart(s) and reproduction facilities.
Forewing: The upper, forward wing pair used for flying.
Hindwing: The lower, rearward wing pair used for flying.
NOTE: Butterflies and Moths are part of the Lepidopteran order as they share many similarities.