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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Coleophora paripennella Zeller, 1839
[Lepidoptera: Coleophoridae]

Dark Thistle Case-bearer


Coleophora paripennella Zeller, 1839. Isis: 208.


Leaf-miner and case-bearer: Larva mines leaves (British leafminers). The larva builds a case from silk, resembling a razor shell in appearance. (UKMoths).

The full-grown case is 12 mm long and blackish-brown (British leafminers). The full grown larva lives in a blackish brown trivalved tubular silken case of about 8 mm.

The mouth angle is 0°-10°, causing the case to lay almost flat on the leaf (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Larva: The larvae of moths have a head capsule and chewing mouthparts with opposable mandibles (see video of a gracillarid larva feeding), six thoracic legs and abdominal legs (see examples).

Head and plates black. Body dull yellowish white; prothoracic plate large with median sulcus; mesothoracic plate consisting of four sclerites, the anterior pair dot-like and widely separared, the posterior pair subrtriangular and closely approximated; metathorax with two small, well-separated dorsal sclerites; thoracic segments with small lateral sclerites; an anal plate; four pairs of abdominal prolegs (Emmet at al., 1996a) (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Pupa: The pupae of moths have visible head appendages, wings and legs which lie in sheaths (see examples).

Adult: The adult is illustrated in UKMoths. The male and female genitalia are illustrated by the Lepidoptera Dissection Group.

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Asteraceae        
Arctium       Pitkin & Plant
Centaurea       British leafminers
Centaurea       UKMoths
Centaurea nigra Common Knapweed British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Cirsium       UKMoths
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Cirsium arvense Creeping Thistle British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Serratula tinctoria Saw-wort British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant

Hosts elsewhere:

Asteraceae        
Arctium       Bladmineerders van Europa
Carduus       Bladmineerders van Europa
Centaurea jacea Brown Knapweed   Bladmineerders van Europa
Centaurea nigra Common Knapweed 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
Saussurea       Bladmineerders van Europa
Serratula tinctoria Saw-wort British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: August to October on Thistle, probably full-grown in autumn. September to October on Knapweed, feeding again from April until May or June (British leafminers).

Time of year - adults: The nocturnal adults fly in July and August and are attracted to light (UKMoths).

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Occurring throughout most of the British Isles (UKMoths), including Bedfordshire, Caernarvonshire, Cambridgeshire, Cheshire, Denbighshire, Derbyshire, Durham, East Kent, East Norfolk, East Suffolk, East Sussex, Easterness, Flintshire, Glamorgan, Herefordshire, Kincardineshire, Merionethshire, North Essex, North Hampshire, Pembrokeshire, Shropshire, South Aberdeenshire, South Wiltshire, Stafford, Surrey, West Cornwall, West Kent, West Norfolk, West Suffolk, Westmorland and Worcestershire (NBN Atlas) and Ireland (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).

Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland. See also Ireland's NBDC interactive map.

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania, Russia - Central and North, Slovakia, Sweden and Switzerland. Also recorded in the East Palaearctic (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Centaurea jacea, Centaurea nigra, Cirsium arvense, Serratula tinctoria

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Ichneumonoidea  
Dolichogenidea dilecta (Haliday, 1834)) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Pholetesor nanus (Reinhard, 1880) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Orgilus ischnus Marshall, 1898 Braconidae: Orgilinae
Diadegma elishae (Bridgman, 1884) Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae


External links: Search the internet:

Belgian Lepidoptera
Biodiversity Heritage Library
Bladmineerders van Europa
British leafminers
Encyclopedia of Life
Fauna Europaea
NBN Atlas
NHM UK Checklist
UKMoths

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Last updated 01-May-2017  Brian Pitkin Top of page