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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 plantaginis Robineau-Desvoidy, 1851
[Diptera: Agromyzidae]


Phytomyza plantaginis Robineau-Desvoidy, 1851. Rev. Mag. Zool. (2)3: 404
Phytomyza robinaldi Goureau, 1851. Annls Soc. ent. Fr. (2)9: 142.
Phytomyza plantaginis Goureau, 1851. Annls. Soc. ent. Fr. (2) 9: 142
Phytomyza biseriata Hering, 1936. Dt. ent. Z. (N.F.). 1936: 77. [Synonymised by Spencer, 1963d: 2]
Phytomyza nannodes Hendel, 1935. Fliegen pal. Reg. 6(2): 435 [Synonymised by Spencer, 1963d: 2]
Phytomyza plantaginicaulis Hering, 1944a. Mitt. dt. ent. Ges. 13: 77. [Synonymised by Spencer, 1963d: 2]
Phytomyza plantaginis Robineau-Desvoidy, 1851; Spencer, 1963d. Stuttg. Beitr. Naturk. Nr. 105: 2-4, figs 2a-2d
Phytomyza plantaginis Robineau-Desvoidy, 1851; Spencer, 1972b. Handbk ident. Br. Ins. 10(5g): 84.
Phytomyza plantaginis Robineau-Desvoidy, 1851; Spencer, 1976. Fauna ent. Scand. 5(1): 469-70, figs 826-7.
Phytomyza plantaginis Robineau-Desvoidy, 1851; Spencer, 1990. Host specialization in the World Agromyzidae (Diptera) : 211, 212 (figs 793-4).


Leaf-mine: A narrow, whitish linear mine, normally in the leaf but more rarely also in the stem. Pupation at end of mine, with the anterior spiracles projecting through the epidermis (Spencer, 1972b: 84).

Strikingly narrow corridor, upper-surface or lower-surface, often also alternating. Frass in comparatively large, very widely spaced grains. Generally the corridor is so narrow that the frass grains seems to lay in a single row. Pupation within the mine, sometimes in the petiole. The black anterior spiracles of the puparium penetrate the epidermis (Bladmineerders van Europa).

The mine is also illustrated in British Leafminers.

Mine of Phytomyza plantaginis on Plantago lanceolata. Image: Willem Ellis (Source: Bladmineerders van Europa)
Mine of Phytomyza plantaginis on Plantago lanceolata
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 (1926), Sasakawa (1961) and illustrated in Bladmineerders van Europa ; posterior spiracles each with about 12 bulbs.

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).

Whitish (Spencer, 1972b: 84). The puparium is illustrated in Bladmineerders van Europa.

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Plantaginaceae        
Plantago coronopus Buck's-horn Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 118
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Robbins, 1991: 105
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 118
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bland, 1992
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bland, 1994
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Robbins, 1991: 105
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 118
Plantago maritima Sea Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Plantago maritima Sea Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1972b: 118
Plantago maritima Sea Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bland, 1994

Hosts elsewhere:

Plantaginaceae        
Plantago       Mines in BMNH
Plantago       Spencer, 1976: 470
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1976: 470
Plantago lanceolata Ribwort Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1990: 211
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Mines in BMNH
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1976: 470
Plantago major Greater Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Spencer, 1990: 211
Plantago maritima Sea Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Plantago media Hoary Plantain British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Plantago raoullii     Mines in BMNH

Time of year - mines: June-November.

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Common and widespread throughout Britain (Spencer, 1972b: 84) including Inner Hebrides (Isle of Coll) (Bland, 1992), Rum (Bland, in Whiteley, 1994), Warwickshire (Keresley) (Robbins, 1991: 105); Anglesey, Cambridgeshire, Cardiganshire, Carmarthenshire, East Kent, Glamorgan, North Somerset, Nottinghamshire, Pembrokeshire, South-west Yorkshire, Stafford and Surrey (NBN Atlas) and the Channel Is. (Martinez in Fauna Europaea).

Also recorded in Ireland (Spencer, 1972b: 84).

Distribution elsewhere: Cosmopolitan. Widespread in continental Europe, including Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden (Spencer, 1976: 469), Germany, Canary Islands (Mines in BMNH), The Netherlands (Bladmineerders van Europa), Belgium (Scheirs et al., 1994; van Frankenhuyzen, Houtman and Kabos, 1982), Germany (Spencer, 1976: 469), Azores, Belarus, Czech Republic, Estonia, European Turkey, French mainland, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Republic of Moldova, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Spanish mainland, Switzerland and Yugoslavia (Martinez in Fauna Europaea).

Range extending east to the Kirghiz and Uzbek Republics of the [former] U.S.S.R. (Spencer, 1976: 469).

Also recorded in Japan, Australia, Canada, the U.S.A. (Spencer, 1976: 469) and New Zealand, where it has probably been introduced and appears to be parthenogenetic (Spencer, 1990: 212).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Plantago coronopus, Plantago lanceolata, Plantago major

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chalcidoidea   
Chrysocharis pubicornis (Zetterstedt, 1838) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Chrysocharis viridis (Nees, 1934) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Diglyphus isaea (Walker, 1838) Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Hemiptarsenus ornatus (Nees, 1834) Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Pnigalio pectinicornis (Linnaeus, 1758) Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Halticoptera aenea (Walker, 1833) Pteromalidae: Miscogastrinae
Epiclerus panyas (Walker, 1839) Tetracampidae: Tetracampinae
Ichneumonoidea  
Chorebus anasellus (Stelfox, 1952) Braconidae: Alysiinae
Dacnusa maculipes Thomson, 1895 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Dacnusa plantaginis Griffiths, 1967 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Dacnusa sibirica Telenga, 1935 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Grammospila rufiventris (Nees, 1812) Braconidae: Alysiinae
Phaedrotoma diversa Szépligeti, 1898 Braconidae: Opiinae
Phaedrotoma exigua Wesmael, 1835 Braconidae: Opiinae
Phaedrotoma depeculator (Förster, 1862) Braconidae: Opiinae
Phaedrotoma diversa (Szépligeti, 1898) Braconidae: Opiinae


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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