The leaf and stem mines of British flies and other insects

(Coleoptera, Diptera, Hymenoptera and Lepidoptera)

by Brian Pitkin, Willem Ellis, Colin Plant and Rob Edmunds

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Agromyza hendeli Griffiths, 1963
[Diptera: Agromyzidae]

Agromyza hendeli Griffiths, 1963b. Tijdschr. Ent. 106(2): 136
Agromyza hendeli Griffiths, 1963b; Spencer, 1972b. Handbk ident. Br. Ins. 10(5g): 36 (fig. 103), 38, 124
Agromyza hendeli Griffiths, 1963b; Spencer, 1976. Fauna ent. Scand. 5(1): 112-114, figs 182-3.
Agromyza hendeli Griffiths, 1963b; Spencer, 1990. Host specialization in the world Agromyzidae (Diptera) : 356, 359.

Leaf-mine: Normally Three or four eggs laid together. The larvae form a large communal mine, feeding first up and then down the leaf. Pupation external, the puparium frequently adhering to the leaf near the end of the mine (Spencer, 1972b: 38).

Three or four eggs are deposited in a row, at right angle to the leaf margin. After hatching each of the larvae makes a corridor in the direction of the leaf tip. The corridors widen, and fuse into one upper-surface blotch. Frass in comparatively large lumps. Pupuation as a rule outside the mine (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Larva: The larvae of flies are leg-less maggots without a head capsule (see examples). They never have thoracic or abdominal legs. They do not have chewing mouthparts, although they do have a characteristic cephalo-pharyngeal skeleton (see examples), usually visible internally through the body wall.

The larva is described by Griffiths (1963). Larval mandibles each with two teeth (Spencer, 1976: 114).

Rear arms of the cephalic skeleton strongly sclerotised, brown or black. Rear spiracula separated by about their diameter. The larva is described by Griffiths (1963a) and de Meijere (1925a, as nigripes); the supplementary description by de Meijere (1943a) contains mistakes. The dark rear arms of the cehalic skeleton easily separate the larvae of this species from those of A. phragmitidis, that also lives on Phragmites. However, there still is no way to distinguish the larvae of hendeli from those of the rare A. spenceri (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Puparium: The puparia of flies are formed within the hardened last larval skin or puparium and as a result sheaths enclosing head appendages, wings and legs are not visible externally (see examples).

Black or brown, frequently adhering to the leaf near end of mine; posterior spiracles each with 3 bulbs (Spencer, 1976: 114).

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Phragmites       Robbins, 1991: 135
Phragmites australis Common Reed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 124

Hosts elsewhere:

Phragmites australis Common Reed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1976: 114
Phragmites australis Common Reed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1990: 356
Phragmites australis Common Reed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - mines: June and August (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Widespread in Britain including Cambridge (Chippenham Fen), Huntingdonshire (Woodwalton Fen), Oxford (Hogley) (Spencer, 1972b: 38), Warwickshire (Binley) (Robbins, 1991: 135), Buckinghamshire (VC24), Glamorganshire (VC41) and Surrey (NBN Gateway).

NBN Grid Map:

NBN Grid Map

Agromyza hendeli
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Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Denmark, Sweden, Holland, Germany, Austria, N. Italy, Poland (Spencer, 1976: 114), The Netherlands (Bladmineerders van Europa), Belgium (Scheirs and de Bruyn, 1992), Czech Republic, Estonia, Poland and Slovakia (Martinez in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Interactive Grid Maps of known host species:

Phragmites australis

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chorebus coxator (Thomson, 1895) Braconidae: Alysiinae
Chorebus ninella (Nixon, 1945) Braconidae: Alysiinae
Heterolexis balteata (Thomson, 1895) Braconidae: Alysiinae
Eurytenes polyzonius Wesmael, 1835 Braconidae: Opiinae
Opius brevipalpis Thomson, 1895 Braconidae: Opiinae
Phaedrotoma rex (Fischer, 1958) Braconidae: Opiinae

External links: Search the internet:
Biodiversity Heritage Library
Bladmineerders van Europa
British leafminers
Encyclopedia of Life
Fauna Europaea
NBN Gateway
NHM UK Checklist
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