Pale tussock moth, Calliteara pudibunda (Linnaeus, 1758) (Lepidoptera; Erebidae) with a focus on its situation in Türkiye

Ipekdal K., Avcı M.

EPPO Bulletin, vol.53, no.1, pp.120-131, 2023 (Scopus) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 53 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1111/epp.12904
  • Journal Name: EPPO Bulletin
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, Environment Index, Public Affairs Index, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.120-131
  • Keywords: beech pest, native species, outbreak
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: No


Calliteara pudibunda is a univoltine, polyphagous and native species producing periodic outbreaks which have been recorded only in Europe so far. Its larvae feed on the foliage of beech, oak and several other deciduous and coniferous trees. It is very widespread in Eurasia. In Europe, it is found between the 34th and 60th parallels. In Türkiye, it occurs mainly in coastal regions. Its outbreak range had been thought to be confined between the 48th and 57th parallels in Europe until the last two decades when outbreaks occurred in Italy and Türkiye. Therefore, the southern limit of its outbreak range can be updated as the 36th parallel. The outbreaks recur every 20–30 years, typically continue for 1–2 years, and end suddenly. Favourable meteorological conditions and a temporary rarity of parasitoids seem to be the main causes of the outbreaks. The damage on hosts is not evident until the third larval instar. The affected hosts may grow new shoots the next spring, as the larvae usually do not attack the terminal shoots. Increment loss is possible, but it may not be economically significant per se. However, tree mortality can occur with the combined effects of other stress factors. The impact of parasitoids and predators during the outbreaks is low. There are also fungal species identified from larvae and pupae, some of which might have significant potential in pest management. Additionally, Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki (Btk), polyhedrosis viruses and light traps can potentially be used, although management practices are not recommended in C. pudibunda outbreaks.