(Cossidae), a family of nocturnal moths of the suborder Heteroptera. The wing venation is primitive. Large forms of the moths predominate; in the fauna of the USSR they have wingspans of up to 85 mm, and in Australia they are up to 220 mm across. The coloration varies; species in the northern hemisphere are often brownish or gray with an irregular network pattern on the wings.
There are approximately 600 species, found on almost all the continents but predominantly in the tropics of Asia and Africa. In the USSR the greatest number of species of carpenter moths are found in Middle Asia. The caterpillars are naked and fleshy with white, yellow, or red coloring. They bore long tunnels in wood and cause significant damage. Less frequently they live in the roots, bulbs, and stems of herbaceous plants. Their development usually continues for two or three years, and the caterpillar hibernates. The main pests of orchards and forest plantings include the leopard moth and the common goat moth (Cossus cossus). Countermeasures in orchards and parks include spreading a mixture of clay, lime, and manure on the base of the tree trunk (to prevent the moths from laying eggs on tree trunks); stuffing balls of cotton or oakum soaked in insecticides into the tunnels bored by the caterpillars; cutting and burning infested branches; and felling and burning trees badly infested with the caterpillars.
M. I. FAL’KOVICH