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Cotton Bollworm - Helicoverpa armigera
Cotton Bollworm - Helicoverpa armigera

Cotton bollworm
The cotton bollworm (Helicoverpa armigera), also known as scarce bordered straw, corn earworm, tobacco budworm or old world bollworm, is a species in the order butterflies and moths (Lepidoptera), the division Ditrysia, the superfamily Noctuoidea, and the family owlet moths (Noctuidae). It is found in Southern Europe, (Central and Northern Europe infrequently ), in Africa and Asia, and Australia and New Zealand. It originated in the tropical and subtropical zones and is regarded there as a pest of a variety of crops.
Moth-butterfly - Owlet moth - Cotton Bollworm - side face
Moth-butterfly - Owlet moth - Cotton Bollworm - side face
Adult Helicoverpa armigera reach wingspans of up to 40 mm. Their forewings are yellowish brown. The hindwings are yellowish with a dark edge.
Helicoverpa armigera
Helicoverpa armigera
The cotton bollworm likes to be on the move and penetrates further north during hot summers. It cannot overwinter in Central Europe. The cotton bollworm prefers to live on cultivated land but is also found on warm hillsides or grassy heathland.

The caterpillars eat a very wide range of foods, but are especially fond of crops such as cotton, sunflowers, lemons and tomatoes.
Owlet moth - Cotton Bollworm
Owlet moth - Cotton Bollworm

Helicoverpa armigera
Common namesOld World bollworm, Old World African bollworm, Corn earworm, Scarce Bordered Straw, Cotton Bollworm, Tobacco budworm, African cotton bollworm, Tomato grub, Gram pod borer, Old World Bollworm Moth, American Bollworm
German namesBaumwoll-Kapseleule, Baumwoll-Eule, Baumwolleule
Dutch namesKatoendaguil
Danish namesKriger træk-ugle
Finnish namesHukkavaellusyökkönen
Norwegian namesPestfagerfly
Swedish namesBrunaktigt knölfly, Bomullsknölfly
French namesArmigère
AuthorHübner, 1805

North Europe (British Isles (United Kingdom (Great Britain (England (South England (Southwest England (Cornwall, Somerset, Devonshire)), East England (Suffolk, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire (Huntingdonshire), Bedfordshire), English Midlands (East Midlands (Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire), West Midlands (Staffordshire)), North England (Northwest England (Cheshire), Northeast England (Northumberland), Yorkshire)), Wales (Mid Wales (Montgomeryshire))), Northern Ireland), Ireland), Germany (West Germany (North Rhine-Westphalia)), Scandinavia (Norway (Rogaland), Sweden, Denmark), Fennoscandia (Finland), Baltic region (Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania))), West Europe (Austria (Vienna), France (South France (Corsica, Occitania (Midi-Pyrenees))), Switzerland, Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg)), South Europe (Italy (Italy Islands (Sicily, Sardinia), North Italy, South Italy, Central Italy (Lazio (Rome))), Iberian Peninsula (Spain, Portugal, Andorra)), Central Europe (Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia), Southeast Europe (Romania, Yugoslavia (Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia (Republic of Macedonia), Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro), Bulgaria, Greece (Aegean Islands (Crete)), Albania, Moldova), East Europe (Ukraine), Malta
Far East (Southeast Asia (Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia (Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah)), East Asia (Taiwan, Japan, Korea (South Korea), China (Central China (South-central China (Hong Kong))))), South Asia (India (South India (Andaman and Nicobar Islands)), Afghanistan, Pakistan), West Asia (Near East (Turkey, Cyprus, Israel, Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen)), Central Asia (Tajikistan, Turkestan (Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan))
Georgia, Azerbaijan
Australia (Tasmania, East Australia (Queensland (South East Queensland (Brisbane), Far North Queensland (Cape York Peninsula (Cairns), Gordonvale (Meringa))), New South Wales (Australian Capital Territory (Canberra), Sydney Basin (Sydney)), Victoria), Northern Territory, South Australia, West Australia)
New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands
New Zealand (North Island (Gisborne)), French Polynesia, Tonga
East Africa
Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Indian Ocean islands (Madagascar, Seychelles, Mauritius, Réunion, Comoro Islands (Comoros)), Ethiopia, Malawi, Mozambique, Somalia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Eritrea
Central Africa
Angola, Cameroon, Chad, Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo)
North Africa
Algeria, Tunisia, Macaronesia (Canary Islands, Cape Verde, Azores, Madeira (Savage Islands)), Morocco, Sudan, Libya
West Africa
Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Gambia, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Benin
Southern Africa
Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Republic South Africa
South America
Argentina, Chile
North America
USA (California)
Caribbean islands (Antilles (Greater Antilles (Puerto Rico), Lesser Antilles))


West Palaearctic

World Oceans:

Atlantic Ocean
British overseas territory Atlantic
Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha

Distribution by Synonymus:
Heliothis armigera   Argentina, California, Chile
Heliothis guidellii   Near East
Heliothis armigera   Lesotho
Heliothis guidellii   South Europe
CountriesAfghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Benin, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Chad, Chile, China, Comoros, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Egypt, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Japan, Kenya, Kiribati, Latvia, Lesotho, Libya, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Micronesia, Moldova, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Korea, Spain, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Tonga, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, USA, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Links and ReferencesHelicoverpa armigera in
Helicoverpa armigera in
Helicoverpa armigera in
Helicoverpa armigera in
Helicoverpa armigera in
Helicoverpa armigera in Wikipedia (English)

Description of images / photos
Photography with Cameras
Nikon D3x, Nikon D300, Canon 50D
Image editing with Photoshop
1. Cotton Bollworm - Helicoverpa armigera
2. Moth-butterfly - Owlet moth - Cotton Bollworm - side face
3. Helicoverpa armigera
4. Owlet moth - Cotton Bollworm
Quick search: Armigera - Helicoverpa - Cotton - Bollworm - Adult - Moths
Moth - Butterflies - Europe - Owlet - Crops - Yellowish - Central - Noctuoidea
Insects, True insects
Winged insects
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Lepidopterans, Butterflies and Moths
Owlet Moths, Underwings, Noctuid moths, Dagger moths, Cutworms, Underwing moths, Miller Moths
Helicoverpa armigera
Old World bollworm, Old World African bollworm, Corn earworm, Scarce Bordered Straw, Cotton Bollworm, Tobacco budworm, African cotton bollworm, Tomato grub, Gram pod borer, Old World Bollworm Moth, American Bollworm
AuthorHübner, 1805
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Helicoverpa armigera armigera
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