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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Phytomyza cirsii Hendel, 1923
[Diptera: Agromyzidae]


Phytomyza cirsii Hendel, 1923a. Dt. ent. Z. 1923(4):390
Phytomyza cirsicola Hendel, 1927a. Zool. Anz. 69: 258
Phytomyza cirsii Hendel, 1923a; Spencer, 1972b. Handbk ident. Br. Ins. 10(5g): 71, 72 (fig. 233A), 77, 79, 112
Phytomyza cirsii Hendel, 1923a; Spencer, 1976. Fauna ent. Scand. 5(1): 404-5, figs 647B, 707.
Phytomyza cirsii Hendel, 1923a; Spencer, 1990. Host specialization in the World Agromyzidae (Diptera) : 251, 255, 256 (fig. 957), 259.


Leaf-mine: A shallow, upper surface, whitish linear mine. Pupation external (Spencer, 1972b: 72 (fig. 233A), 77).

Tortuous, upper-surface corridor, often somewhat geryish, and/or following the leaf margin. Frass grains fairly small, separated by about their own diameter. Primary feeding lines often conspicuous. Pupation outside the mine; exit slit in upper epidermis (Bladmineerders van Europa).

A long whitish upper surface mine. The frass grains are small and can occur close together (British leafminers).

Mine of Phytomyza cirsii on Cirsium arvense. Image: Willem Ellis (Source: Bladmineerders van Europa)
Mine of Phytomyza cirsii on Cirsium arvense
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 illustrated in Bladmineerders van Europa.

Phytomyza cirsii larva,  lateral
Phytomyza cirsii larva, lateral
Image: © Willem Ellis (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; posterior spiracles each with an ellipse of up to 26 minute bulbs (Spencer, 1972b: 77).

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Asteraceae        
Cirsium       Robbins, 1991: 121
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Robbins, 1983: 25
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 112
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Cirsium palustre Marsh Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 112
Cirsium palustre Marsh Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Cirsium vulgare Spear Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Cirsium vulgare Spear Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH

Hosts elsewhere:

Asteraceae        
Carduus acanthoides     Bladmineerders van Europa
Carduus crispus Welted Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Carduus defloratus     Bladmineerders van Europa
Carduus nutans Musk Thistle   Bladmineerders van Europa
Carduus personata     Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium       Spencer, 1990: 251
Cirsium       Spencer, 1976: 405
Cirsium acaule Dwarf Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium candelabrum     Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium eriophorum Woolly Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium oleraceum Cabbage Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium palustre Marsh Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium pannonicum     Bladmineerders van Europa
Cirsium vulgare Spear Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Cynara       Bladmineerders van Europa
? Scolymus       Spencer, 1990: 259
Serratula tinctoria Saw-wort British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - mines: June-August, October.

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Widespread, probably not uncommon but overlooked. London (Hampstead), Suffolk (Flatford) (Spencer, 1972b: 77), Warwickshire (Keresley) (Robbins, 1991: 121); Cambridgeshire, East Suffolk, Glamorgan, Haddington, Huntingdonshire, Leicestershire, Meriontheshire, North Somerset, Shropshire, South Lancaster, South-west Yorkshire, Stafford, West Gloucestershire, West Suffolk and Worcestershire (NBN Atlas).

Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland: Co. Clare (the Burren) (Spencer, 1972b: 77).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread and common in much of Europe including Denmark, Finland, Sweden (Spencer, 1976: 405), The Netherlands (Bladmineerders van Europa), Belgium (Scheirs, de Bruyn and von Tschirnhaus, 1996), Germany (Spencer, 1976: 570), Austria, Czech Republic, European Turkey, French mainland, Lithuania, Poland and Spanish mainland (Martinez in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Carduus acanthoides, Carduus crispus, Carduus nutans, Cirsium acaule, Cirsium arvense, Cirsium eriophorum, Cirsium oleraceum, Cirsium palustre, Cirsium vulgare, Serratula tinctoria

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chalcidoidea   
Chrysocharis orbicularis (Nees, 1834) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Chrysocharis viridis (Nees, 1934) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Ichneumonoidea  
Dacnusa maculipes Thomson, 1895 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Dacnusa maculipes Thomson, 1895 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Exotela spinifer (Nixon, 1954) 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
Find using Google
Find using Google Scholar
Find images using Google


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