Moths of North Dakota


Family Plutellidae: Diamond-backed moths

Diagnosis: Ocelli present, proboscis unscaled; fw with Rs4 running to outer margin; fw inner margin usually with a longitudinal band of pale (brown to silvery-white) scales. A moth with closed wings when viewed from above has the silvery ‘diamond back.’

Diversity: Fewer than 100 species worldwide; 20 species in eight genera in North America; as yet a single species known from North Dakota.

Checklist numbers: 2347- 2366.

Biology: Larvae are communal web makers on Brassicaceae– mustards. Boldly patterned pupae are visible inside a loose meshed cocoon.


moth image

Further reading:

Dougdale, John S. et al., Chapter 8. The Yponomeutoidea, pp. 119- 130 in Kristensen, Neils P. ed. 1999. Lepidoptera, moths and butterflies. Part 35, Vol. 1 in Handbook of Zoology. Maximilian Fischer ed. Walter de Gryter, New York. 491 pp.

Scoble, Malcom J. 1992. Chapter 11. Lower Ditrysia, pp. 225- 254 in The Lepidoptera: form, function, and diversity. Oxford Univ. press. 1982. 404 pp.

Talekar, N. S. and A. M. Shelton. 1993. Biology, ecology, and management of the diamondback moth. Ann. Rev. Entomol. 38: 275- 301.



Last updated: 03/27/02

Gerald M. Fauske
Research Specialist
202 Hultz Hall
Fargo, ND 58105

Published by the Department of Entomology 

Prospective students may schedule a visit by calling 1-800-488-NDSU.