Cork Weevil

Anything to do with Port.
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Dalva Golden White Colheita 1952
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Cork Weevil

Post by LGTrotter » 21:22 Sat 20 Jan 2018

Having read the reports of the Christmas do I cannot think that I have ever come across cork weevil although I have heard about it. Could those with experience tell me what to look out for. I wonder if you can get weevil in corks where there is a good solid capsule? Will they go right through a collection if you introduce one weevily bottle? Is it like woodworm where you can look at the end of the cork and know you have weevil? Any pictures?


Will W.
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Re: Cork Weevil

Post by Will W. » 17:11 Sun 21 Jan 2018

I had the same reaction in reading the Christmas tasting notes, though I had never heard of cork weevil. The following thread would appear to shed light on the issue: ... m/98660105

Evidently, the offending insect is not a weevil but a caterpillar/moth of some sort. Or so one of the individuals posting to the aforementioned thread asserts:

Nemapogon cloacellus is found mainly in the spring and early summer. The moth grows to a length of 7.5 mm and has a wingspan of 10 to 14 mm. The cork moth lays its eggs not only on cork but also on moist wine casks in dark, dank cellars. The caterpillars of this moth species are also called cork worms.

Cork moths and cork worms are highly undesirable in wine cellars. The caterpillars destroy the corks in bottles of wine, and the wine either leaks out or tastes musty. The taste is caused by mould fungi, bacteria and mites. They settle on the cork-crumb "cocoons", which are interspersed with faeces, and thus ruin the wine.

Dow 1980
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Re: Cork Weevil

Post by PhilW » 18:20 Sun 21 Jan 2018

I have little knowledge regarding weevils; but the corks in the bad bottles at the Xmas tasting were certainly very damaged by something, such that from the exterior of the bottle there were ragged pieces missing. From elsewhere I note that there are a number of insects which might attack corks where able, in addition to any other vermin with access to the cork.

Andy Velebil
Dow 1980
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Re: Cork Weevil

Post by Andy Velebil » 02:33 Mon 22 Jan 2018

That is why capsules came into being, to cover the cork and prevent various insects and rodents from attacking the corks. From what I understand now it's not the issue it used to be. I would again assume modern insecticides use has curtailed the issues and why many wines no longer use capsules.

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uncle tom
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Re: Cork Weevil

Post by uncle tom » 13:53 Tue 23 Jan 2018

Nemapogon cloacellus is a small moth that is typically found in old rotting woodland. That it is called the Cork Moth may be a red herring, as I've never seen any dead (or live) moths around weevil infested bottles I've come across.

What I have found is evidence of ordinary woodworm - the furniture beetle - which seems particularly partial to the wood of wine cases, and will infest the corks of the bottles inside if the capsules are damaged enough to let them enter..
I may be drunk, Miss, but in the morning I shall be sober and you will still be ugly - W.S. Churchill

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