An official website of the United States government.

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you've safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Box Tree Moth

Scientific Name

Cydalima perspectalis (Walker, 1859) (Mally and Nuss 2010)

Common Name

Box tree moth, box tree caterpillar

Synonym

Diaphania perspectalis

Native To

Eastern Asia (Bras et al. 2019)

Date of U.S. Introduction

2021 (APHIS 2021b)

Means of Introduction

Imported on nursery plants shipped from Canada (APHIS 2021b)

Impact

Feeds primarily on boxwood plants (Buxus spp.), where heavy infestations can defoliate plants and lead to plant death (APHIS 2021a)

Box tree moth

Box tree moth, adult

Credit

Photo by Szabolcs Sáfián; University of West Hungary

Find more images

Spotlights

  • APHIS Issues Draft Environmental Assessment for the Box Tree Moth Control Program in New York State

    • Mar 31, 2022
    • USDA. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

    • The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has completed a draft environmental assessment (EA) required under the National Environmental Policy Act for its box tree moth (BTM) control program in New York. The BTM was discovered in Niagara County, New York, in July 2021. The control program proposed in the draft EA for commercial nurseries and landscaped areas where BTM has been detected includes a combination of quarantine measures, survey activities, potential box tree removal, and pesticide use.

      APHIS is announcing through local newspapers in areas of New York State, where the BTM control program may occur, that a notice of availability for the draft EA will be available at https://www.regulations.gov/ (APHIS-2022-0018) for a 30-day public comment period. Anyone wishing to comment on the draft EA should submit comments on https://www.regulations.gov or send comments to the APHIS State Plant Health Director in New York State. APHIS will also post the draft EA on the APHIS website at USDA APHIS | Box Tree Moth.

  • USDA Confirms Box Tree Moth and Takes Action to Contain and Eradicate the Pest

    • May 28, 2021
    • USDA. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

    • The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the presence of box tree moth, Cydalima perspectalis, in the continental United States and is taking action alongside state partners and industry to contain and eradicate the invasive pest that was imported on nursery plants shipped from Ontario, Canada. The box tree moth can significantly damage and potentially kill boxwood plants if left unchecked. Between August 2020 and April 2021, a nursery in St. Catharines, Ontario shipped boxwood (Buxus species) that may have been infested with box tree moth to locations in six states—25 retail facilities in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Ohio, and South Carolina—and a distribution center in Tennessee. At this time, the pest has been identified in three facilities in Michigan, one in Connecticut, and one in South Carolina, and APHIS is working with state plant regulatory officials to determine whether other facilities may be impacted.

      Members of the public can prevent the box tree moth from spreading. Please allow State or Federal agricultural officials to inspect your boxwood trees and place an insect trap if they visit your home. If you bought a boxwood plant within the last few months, please inspect it for signs of the box tree moth and report any findings to your local USDA office or State agriculture department.

  • IDaids Supporting Identification of the Introduced Box Tree Moth

    • Jul 2021
    • USDAAPHISPPQCPHST. Identification Technology Program.

    • In May of this year, USDA confirmed the presence of box tree moths in the U.S. The pests likely hitchhiked here via infested plant material imported from an Ontario, Canada nursery. APHIS has initiated an emergency response including a Federal Order (PDF | 162 KB) halting host material from crossing the border pending risk analysis. Here is a set of resources supporting identification of this pest to help protect America's boxwoods.

Distribution / Maps / Survey Status

Federally Regulated

  • Import Federal Orders

    • USDA. APHIS. Plant Protection and Quarantine.

    • A Federal Order is a legal document issued in response to an emergency when the Administrator of APHIS considers it necessary to take regulatory action to protect agriculture or prevent the entry and establishment into the United States of a pest or disease. Federal Orders are effective immediately and contain the specific regulatory requirements.

Videos

Selected Resources

The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source.

Partnership
Federal Government
International Government
State and Local Government
Academic
Professional
Citations