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

N.B. Links to the latest version of 'Leafminers and plant galls of Europe' are being edited

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Ophiomyia cunctata (Hendel, 1920)
[Diptera: Agromyzidae]


Melanagromyza cunctata Hendel, 1920. Arch. Naturgesch. 84A(7) (1918): 126
Melanagromyza cunctata Hendel, 1920; Hendel, 1931. Fliegen palaearkt. Reg. 6(2): 164
Ophiomyia cunctata (Hendel, 1920); Spencer, 1964a. Beitr. Ent. 14: 784
Ophiomyia cunctata (Hendel, 1820); Spencer, 1972b. Handbk ident. Br. Ins. 10(5g): 20, 21 (figs 37-8), 25, 113, 115
Ophiomyia cunctata (Hendel, 1820); Spencer, 1976. Fauna ent. Scand. 5(1): 62-3, figs 64-66
Ophiomyia cunctata (Hendel, 1820); Spencer, 1990. Host specialization in the World Agromyzidae (Diptera) : 244, 259, 260 (fig. 969), 261.


Leaf-mine: A whitish blotch mine along mid-rib, with offshoots into leaf blade. Pupation takes place at the base of the mid-rib (Spencer, 1972b: 25; Spencer. 1976: 63 (fig. 66)).

The mine begins as a very narrow, upper- or lower-surface corridor, somewhere in the blade. When this hits a thick vein the larva uses this to descend towards the midrib. From that moment the lave lives in the hollow midrib. From here short, lobate corridors enter the leaf blade. The larva may move to another leaf by way of the leaf base. The corridors in the leaf are virtually free of frass (at most a few grains where they leave the midrib); frass is concentrated in the base of the midrib. Here also the pupation takes place (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Mine of Ophiomyia cunctata on Taraxacum officinale. Image: Willem Ellis (Source: Bladmineerders van Europa)
Mine of Ophiomyia cunctata on Taraxacum officinale
Image: © Willem Ellis (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 de Meijere (1925: 252 as O. sp. and 1934). Posterior spiracles are on short stalks, each with an ellipse of 9 bulbs (Spencer, 1972b: 25). The larva is illustrated in 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).

Yellowish white; posterior spiracles are on short stalks, each with an ellipse of 9 bulbs (Spencer, 1972b: 25). The puparium is illustrated in Bladmineerders van Europa.

Comments: Picris echioides is treated as Helminthotheca echioides (Bristly Oxtongue) by Stace (2010).

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Asteraceae        

? Bellis

      Robbins, 1991: 113

? Bellis

perennis Daisy British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Robbins, 1989: 20
Crepis biennis Rough Hawks-beard British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 113
Helminthotheca echioides Bristly Oxtongue British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH, as Picris
Hypochaeris       Spencer, 1972b: 25
Lapsana       Robbins, 1991: 123
Lapsana       Spencer, 1972b: 25
Lapsana communis Nipplewort British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 113
Mycelis       Spencer, 1972b: 25
Picris       Spencer, 1972b: 25
Sonchus ? arvensis Perennial Sow-thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Sonchus asper Prickly Sow-thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 115
Sonchus oleraceus Smooth Sow-thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Taraxacum      

Robbins, 1989: 20.

Taraxacum       Robbins, 1991: 123
Taraxacum       Spencer, 1972b: 25
Taraxacum officinale Dandelion British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Taraxacum officinale Dandelion British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 115

Hosts elsewhere:

Asteraceae        
Crepis       Bladmineerders van Europa
Crepis       Spencer, 1976: 62
Crepis       Spencer, 1990: 259
Hypochaeris       Bladmineerders van Europa
Hypochaeris       Spencer, 1976: 62
Hypochaeris       Spencer, 1990: 259
Lactuca       Bladmineerders van Europa
Lactuca       Spencer, 1990: 259
Lapsana       Spencer, 1990: 259
Lapsana       Spencer, 1976: 62
Lapsana communis Nipplewort British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Mycelis       Spencer, 1976: 62
Mycelis muralis Wall Lettuce British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Picris       Spencer, 1976: 62
Picris       Spencer, 1990: 259
Picris hieracioides Hawkweed Oxtongue British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Prenanthes       Spencer, 1990: 259
Sonchus       Spencer, 1976: 62
Sonchus       Spencer, 1990: 259
Sonchus arvensis Perennial Sow-thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Sonchus oleraceus Smooth Sow-thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Taraxacum       Spencer, 1976: 62
Taraxacum       Spencer, 1990: 259
Taraxacum officinale Dandelion British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - mines: July-October.

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Widespread in Britain including Kent (Dartford), London (Hampstead), Isle Of Wight (Blackgang Chine), Gloucester. (Coombe Dingle), Hertfordshire (Tring), Suffolk (Newmarket), Lancaster (Formby), Dunbarton (Bonhill) (Spencer, 1972b: 25), Warwickshire (Coventry, Fazeley Canal and Foleshill) (Robbins, 1991: 123); Cambridgeshire, East Gloucestershire, East Suffolk, Glamorgan, Northamptonshire, South Lancaster and South-west Yorkshire (NBN Atlas).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread throughout much of Europe including Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden (Spencer, 1976: 62), The Netherlands (Bladmineerders van Europa), Albania, Austria, Balearic Is., Canary Is., Czech Republic, European Turkey, French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Lithuania, Poland, Republic of Moldova, Slovakia and Spanish mainland (Martinez in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

? Bellis perennis, Crepis biennis, Lapsana communis, Mycelis muralis, Picris echioides (= Helminthotheca echioides), Picris hieracioides, Sonchus arvensis, Sonchus oleraceus, Taraxacum officinale

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chalcidoidea   
Chrysocharis amyite (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Chrysocharis entedonoides (Walker, 1872) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Chrysocharis orbicularis (Nees, 1834) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Sphegigaster stepicola Boucek, 1965 Pteromalidae: Pteromalinae
Ichneumonoidea  
Chorebus leptogaster (Haliday, 1839) Braconidae: Alysiinae


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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