The Moths That Can Become Imprisoned In Plants

Leaflower trees attract leaf flower moths, and not just for pollination. These plants can give off a fragrant odor that leaflower moths cannot resist, and much to their detriment. Most leaf flower larvae are deposited into the fruit that grows on the plants. Once the larvae develop into maturity it will fall onto the forest floor only to spread its new wings and fly away. However, another species of moth, E. lanceolaria, remains enclosed within the fruit even after it has reached adulthood.

The particular tree that this species of moth prefers is called G. lanceolarium, and this tree is unique in that it takes a longer than normal amount of time before this tree bears fruit. Naturally, this tree’s pollinating moths will find themselves trapped within the tree’s fruit until the fruit matures, which is well into the moths adult life. Luckily, the moth eventually escapes just in time to lay their eggs and survive long enough to feed on some fruit, which I imagine they must be pretty sick of by that point.

Do you know of any insects that die as a result of the pollination process?

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Smithereen Pest Management provides IPM pest services to residential and commercial clients in Kansas, Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana and Missouri.
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