How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Western grapeleaf skeletonizer—Harrisina brillians

Young skeletonizer larvae are cream colored. Older larvae are yellow with two purple and several blackish bands. Each body segment has four tufts of long, black stinging spines. Mature caterpillars are 0.5 inch long. Adults are metallic bluish to greenish black moths. Their wing span is 1 to 1.3 inches.

Life cycle

Damage

Skeletonizers first eat the undersurface of leaves. Later all leaf tissue between the main veins is eaten, causing a "skeleton" effect.

Solutions

Larvae are attacked by naturally occurring parasites as well as by a granulosis virus disease. Applications of spinosad or Bacillus thuringiensis are effective for controlling skeletonizers. Good spray coverage on undersides of leaves is essential.

Adult moths
Adult moths
Mature larvae
Mature larvae
Spots by larvae
Spots by larvae
Skeletonized leaves
Skeletonized leaves

Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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