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Cotton Pink Bollworm

Insect

(Pectinophora gossypiella)
Cotton Pink Bollworm
Appearance

Adult moth : dark, fuscous brown, about 10mm in length. Larvae : newly hatched larvae 1mm, characteristic pink develops only in the last two instars.

Life Cycle

Eggs, elongated, flattened, pearl white coloured eggs on the undersides of young leaves, flower buds, shoots and green bolls. Larvae hatch in 4-5 days, feeding for 8-41 days before pupating in fallen bolls and leaves. 4-6 generations are completed in a year.

Notes

Chiefly attacks cotton. Larvae bore into bolls, feeding on one seed and then the next. Entry holes quickly get sealed up, so infestation is not easy to detect. The larvae of the last stage make preparations for a prolonged hibernation & they hollow out two seeds, web them together and hibernate inside the double seed. This behaviour is responsible for the seriousness of the pest as it can tide over unfavourable conditions and is inadvertently transported over long distances along with cottonseed.