Distribution map


Cydalima perspectalis extends its range in Bulgaria



The box tree moth Cydalima perspectalis is a major pest of ornamental box trees (Buxus spp.). in urban landscape, at historical and decorative gardens and parks where they are highly used as design plants (EPPO 2012). In addition, the moth poses a serious threat to existing native populations of Buxus sempervirens in Europe (Kenis et al. 2013). The moth is native to East Asia. The first record of its presence in Europe was in Germany in 2007 (Krüger 2008). Since then the species has been recorded in most of the countries in Europe.


In Bulgaria, the box tree moth was recorded for the first time in Balchik Botanical Garden, at the Black Sea coast, in 2014 (Beshkov et al. 2015).The moth has established and caused severe damages to box trees (Buxus spp.) in private and public gardens where these plants are of great structural importance. The species has two generations per year in Bulgaria. It overwinters as young larvae between the leaves. After overwintering, the larvae continue feeding until the middle of May and pupate in the crown of the plants. First instar larvae can be found in March/ April. These feed as miners within the leaves and then skeletonise them. Last instar larvae feed on the leaves surrounded by loose webbing, pupating within a web. The moths from the fist generation appear at the beginning of June. A new flight of moths is also detected in the middle of August (Beshkov et al. 2015). Infested branches and plants may die for one season.


At present, this species is found only in urban areas in Bulgaria, and is known from the following localities: the Balchik Botanical Garden, Balchik Town, Dobrich, Zlatni Pyasatsi Resort, Varna Zhurnalist, Evksinograd, Burgas, Sozopol, Primorsko, Strandzha Mountains, Gramatikovo Village, Kalofer, Plovdiv, Sofia, Dragalevtsi, and Usoyka Village (Beshkov et al. 2015, Pencheva, Yovkova 2016). It has continued to extend its range in Bulgaria.


Imago of C. perspectalis

Larva of C. perspectalis

Plant damaged by the larvae of C. perspectalis

Heavily infested box trees by the moth

Photos: Rumen Tomov




Beshkov S., S. Abadjiev, D. Dimitrov 2015.Cydalima perspectalis (Walker, 1859) (Lepidoptera: Pyraloidea: Crambidae: Spilomelinae) – New invasive pest moth in Bulgaria. Entomologist’s Record and Journal of Variation,127: 18-22.


EPPO 2012. EPPO study on the risk of imports of plants for planting. EPPO Technical Document No. 1061.


Kenis M., S. Nacambo, F. L. G. Leuthardt, F. di Domenico, T. Haye 2013. The box tree moth, Cydalima perspectalis, in Europe: horticultural pest or environmental disaster? Aliens, 33: 38-41.


Krüger E. O. 2008. Glyphodes perspectalis (Walker, 1859) – Neu für die Fauna Europas (Lepidoptera: Crambidae). Entomologische Zeitschrift, 118: 81-83.


Pеncheva А., M. Yovkova 2016. New data on alien insect pests of ornamental plants in Bulgaria. Forestry Ideas, 22, 1 (51): 17-33.


For contact:


Rumen Tomov This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Stoyan Beshkov This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it