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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Cricotopus brevipalpis (Kieffer, 1909)
[Diptera: Chironomidae]


Chironomus brevipalpis Kieffer, 1909. JOURNAL: PAGE
Cricotopus brevipalpis (Kieffer, 1909); Bland and Rotheray, 1994. Dipterist's Digest. 1 (1): 34.



Tunneler: Tunnel follows erratic routes; the larva leaves the tunnel occasionally and recommences tunneling elsewhere in the same leaf or another leaf; at the termination of some of the mines a special double-walled chamber is constructed, possibly for moulting (Bland and Rotheray, 1994: 34).

The larvae of a number of species of Chironomidae (non-biting midges) live in tunnels in decaying leaf sheaths under water. Their tunnels are open at both ends, and the larvae feed on particles they obtain from a water current they create in the tunnels. They do not feed on tissues of their 'hostplant' and therefore are not strictly miners (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.

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).

Comments: Cranston in Chandler, 1978 (1978) did not indicate whether his host record was British or Foreign and is therefore included under 'Hosts in Britain' and 'Hosts elsewhere'.

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Potamogetonaceae      

Potamogeton

      Pitkin & Plant

? Potamogeton

natans Broad-leaved Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Cranston in Chandler, 1978: 219
Potamogeton natans Broad-leaved Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bland and Rotheray, 1994: 34
Potamogeton polygonifolius Bog Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bland and Rotheray, 1994: 34

Hosts elsewhere:

Potamogetonaceae      
Potamogeton crispus Curled Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
? Potamogeton natans Broad-leaved Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Cranston in Chandler, 1978: 219
Potamogeton natans Broad-leaved Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Potamogeton polygonifolius Bog Pondweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - mines: August.

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Perth (Kindrogan) (Disney, 1977) and Isle of Coll (Loch Con and Grishipool) (Bland and Rotheray, 1994: 34). (NBN Atlas).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Republic of Moldova, Russia - North and Northwest, Slovakia, Sweden and The Netherlands (Saether and Spies, 2004 in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Potamogeton natans, Potamogeton polygonifolius, Potamogeton crispus

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere: Currently unknown.



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