Coleophoridae

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Coleophoridae

[‚kō·lē·ō′fȯr·ə‚dē]
(invertebrate zoology)
The case bearers, moths with narrow wings composing a family of lepidopteran insects in the suborder Heteroneura; named for the silk-and-leaf shell carried by larvae.

Coleophoridae

 

(casebearer moths), a family of small moths having a wingspread of 7 to 40 mm. The wings are narrow and lusterless, often with light linear patterns along the veins and framed by a long fringe. The caterpillars live in portable cases constructed from silk or small amounts of leaf epidermis. The shape of the case can be used to identify the species of the caterpillar. Some caterpillars live in the stems and fruits without a case or form galls. The caterpillars bore through and feed on the leaves of woody or herbaceous plants.

Casebearer moths are distributed throughout the world but are particularly diverse in the Mediterranean region and in the deserts of the Palaearctic region. The USSR has approximately 1,000 species. Some are agricultural and forest pests, including C. laricella and C. dahurica, which eat the coniferous needles of larches, and C. prunifoliae and C. hemerobiella, which gnaw passageways through the buds, young shoots, and leaves of seed and stone-fruit crops.

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He was trying to feed a batch of unfamiliar case bearers collected in Maui.