Variation in the female frenulum in tortricidae (Lepidoptera). Part 3. Tortricinae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This paper, treating the subfamily Tortricinae, represents the third and final contribution in the three-part series examining variation in the number of bristles in the female frenulum of tortricid moths. Based on the examination of 3,850 females of 1,082 species from 267 genera, the number of bristles in females varies from one to eight and frequently is asymmetrical on the same specimen (19% of specimens examined). A three-bristled frenulum (i.e., with three bristles on each side) is the most common condition in the Arotropora Meyrick group (100% of females examined), Epitymbiini (96%), Orthocomotis Dognin group (92%), Mictopsichia Hbner group (88%), Atteriini (83%), Tortricini (82%), Sparganothini (78%), Phricanthini (73%), Euliini (71%), Archipini (62%), Cnephasiini (61%), and Schoenotenini (51%). In Cochylini a two-bristled frenulum is the most common condition (i.e., 59% of all females examined). In Ceracini a four-bristled frenulum is the most common condition (i.e., 37%), with the vast majority of individuals possessing four or more bristles on at least one side; only 4% had three bristles (both sides). Although variation is rampant at the species, generic, and tribal levels, the data suggest a strong tendency for the reduction of bristles in Cochylini, where two (both sides) is the dominant condition; the addition of bristles in Ceracini, where four bristles is the most common condition; and more bristles in the largest species (e.g., Choristoneura conflictana (Walker), Zacorisca electrina (Meyrick), and Varifula sp.).


  • Sabrina Monsalve
  • Jason J. Dombroskie
  • Winnie H Y Lam
  • Jadranka Rota
  • John W. Brown
External organisations
  • Jorge Tadeo Lozano University
  • University of Alberta
  • University of Copenhagen
  • National Museum of Natural History, Washington
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Zoology


  • Archipini, Arotrophora group, asymmetry, Atteriini, bristles, Ceracini, Cnephasiini, Cochylini, Epitymbiini, Euliini, Mictopsichia group, Orthocomotis group, Schoenotenini, Sparganothini, Tortricini, variation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)335-370
Number of pages36
JournalProceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jul
Publication categoryResearch
Externally publishedYes