Submitted to: Banisteria
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/15/2011
Publication Date: 1/31/2012
Citation: Lam, W., Rota, J., Brown, J.W. 2012. Preliminary list of the leaf-roller moths (Insecta: Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) of Virginia with comments on spatial and temporal distribution. Banisteria. 38:3-37. Interpretive Summary: Caterpillars of the moth family known as leaf-rollers cause millions of dollars in damage annually to agricultural crops, forest trees, and ornamental plants. Understanding their patterns of geographic distribution and flight periods is critical to their detection, control, and management. Moreover, knowledge of the components of local faunas provides a baseline against which to assess the arrival of new and/or invasive species. This paper provides the first comprehensive list of the leaf-rollers of the Commonwealth of Virginia, along with comments on their distribution, seasonal occurrence, and host plants. This information will be useful to those interested in faunal surveys, conservation biology, and the distribution of leaf-roller pests.
Technical Abstract: Based on the examination of 3,457 pinned specimens, we document 263 species of leaf-roller moths (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) from the Commonwealth of Virginia. The vast majority of specimens examined are from five unrelated efforts: a survey of George Washington Memorial Parkway National Park, Fairfax County (2006–2009); a survey conducted by Paul A. Opler at his residence in Alexandria, Fairfax County (1973–1978); a survey conducted by John W. Brown at his the residence in Fairfax, Fairfax County (1997–2009); surveys by Jerry A. Powell (mostly 1971 and 1981); and numerous surveys of sensitive habitats conducted by the Virginia Department of Natural Resources throughout the Commonwealth (1993–2009). Although the geographic coverage is highly uneven, with documented species richness by county ranging from 0 to 198 species, a general picture of the fauna is beginning to emerge. The most commonly collected species (i.e., represented by the most specimens) are Clepsis peritana (Clemens) (250 specimens), Rhyacionia frustrana (Comstock) (178 specimens), Ecdytolopha insiticiana Zeller (126 specimens), and Argyrotaenia velutinana (Walker) (126 specimens). The most widespread species (i.e., recorded from the most counties) are Amorbia humerosana Clemens (18 counties), Choristoneura rosaceana (Harris) (16 counties), Pandemis limitata (Robinson) (14 counties), Sparganothis sulfureana (Clemens) (14 counties), and Cydia latiferreana (Walsingham) (13 counties). County distribution, temporal distribution, and host plants are presented for each species.