Setomorpha rutella

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Tropical tobacco moth
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Tineidae
Genus: Setomorpha
Species: S. rutella
Binomial name
Setomorpha rutella
Zeller, 1852
Synonyms
  • Epilegis cariosella Dietz, 1905
  • Amadria clemensella Chambers, 1874
  • Setomorpha contestata Meyrick, 1922
  • Setomorpha corticinella Snellen, 1885
  • Setomorpha discipunctella Rebel, 1894
  • Chrestotes dryas Butler, 1881
  • Trisyntopa euryspoda Lower, 1918
  • Apotomia fractiliniella Dietz, 1905
  • Setomorpha inamoenella Zeller, 1873
  • Setomorpha majorella Dietz, 1905
  • Setomorpha margalaestriata Keuchenius, 1917
  • Gelechia multimaculella Chambers, 1878
  • Setomorpha operosella Zeller, 1873
  • Setomorpha ruderella Zeller, 1873
  • Setomorpha rupicella Zeller, 1852
  • Setomorpha sigmoidella Dietz, 1905
  • Setomorpha tineoides Dammerman, 1919
  • Semiota transversestrigella Dietz, 1905

Setomorpha rutella (tropical tobacco moth) is a moth of the Tineidae family. It is a widely spread species that has been distributed by commerce over much of the warmer parts of Africa, Eurasia, Malaysia, Australia, many Pacific islands and North America and South America.

The wingspan is 9–22 mm. Adults are brown and speckled with dark brown or black.

The larvae feed on dried goods, cereals, grain, rice, nuts, seeds and other dry vegetable matter. It is a pest of dried tobacco leaves in some regions and it has been reported as a pest of dried insect specimens. Full-grown larvae are about 17 mm long, cylindrical, dirty-white and skin transparent. The head is red-brown.

The larva pupates in a closely woven and smooth cocoon within a loosely spun outer framework or outer cocoon, to which particles of food and excrement adhere.

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