The Wax Moth: A Problem or a Solution?

Morphometric Characteristics of the Wax Moth

Author(s): Lovleen Marwaha

Pp: 16-30 (15)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815123821123010004

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The two predominant wax moth species, the greater and the lesser wax moths, exhibit remarkably different morphometric characteristics in the egg, larva, pupa, and adult stages. The eggs of the greater wax moth (GWM) are pink, cream or white, with an ellipsoid, ovoid or obovoid shape, whereas the eggs of the lesser wax moth (LWM) are creamy-white with a spherical shape. Furthermore, in the GWM, the egg size range is 0.44 ± 0.04 × 0.36 ± 0.02 mm, while in the LWM, the egg size corresponds to 0.41 ± 0.02 × 0.31 ± 0.01 mm. The first instar larval length in the GWM is 1-3 mm, whereas the last instar body length corresponds to 12-20 mm. In the case of LWM, the first instar of body measurement is 1-20 mm, while in the last instar, it grows upto18.8 ± 0.4 mm. The pupal size in the GWM; is 12-20 mm in length and 5-7 mm in width, while the pupa in the LWM is 11.3 ± 0.4 mm in length and 2.80 ± 1.89 mm in width. Similarly, in the LWM, the adult body is 10 mm long in the male and 13 mm long in the female moths. The GWM adults possess a 15 mm body length. The dimensions mentioned above for the GWM and the LWM elucidate that the various developmental stages are distinguishable. The present chapter is attributed to the external body dimension and characteristic features of two predominant types of wax moths, which impose significant challenges to apiculture. 

Keywords: Wax Moth morphology, Body Size of Wax moth Egg, Wax moth larva, Wax Moth pupa and Adult wax moth, Galleria mellonella.

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