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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Elachista regificella Sircom, 1849
[Lepidoptera: Elachistidae]

Wood-rush Dwarf


Elachista regificella Sircom, 1849. Zoologist 7: App. xlii.


Leaf-miner: The mine formed is long, inflated and puckers the leaf surface. The larva often swaps leaves (British leafminers).

Oviposition generally at the underside of the top half of the leaf. Between September and the end of February a very narrow mine is made, not longer than 3 cm, parallel to the midrib. The mine then suddenly widens to almost the full width of the leaf. The frass is concentrated in the transition area of the two mine types. In the broad part folds develop. Larvae can make a new mine, obviously without the initial part. Here the frass in concentrated around the entrance hole. Pupation outside the mine (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 pale honey coloured, mouth-parts a little darker; prothorcic and anal plates and thoracic legs likewise; body greenish black (Langmaid, 2007a) (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:

Juncaceae        
Luzula pilosa Hairy Wood-rush British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Luzula sylvatica Great Wood-rush British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Luzula sylvatica Great Wood-rush British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant

Hosts elsewhere:

Juncaceae        
Luzula sylvatica Great Wood-rush British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: September - June (British leafminers).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Occurs in South West England, from Monmouth in Wales and the East of Scotland (British leafminers) including Caernarvonshire, Denbighshire, Derbyshire, Dorset, East Cornwall, Easterness, Herefordshire, Hertfordshire, Kincardineshire, Leicestershire, Merionethshire, Monmouthshire, North Aberdeen, North Devon, Northamptonshire, Northumberland South, Pembrokeshire, South Aberdeen, South Hampshire, Stafford, West Cornwall, West Gloucestershire, West Norfolk, West Suffolk and Worcestershire (NBN Atlas).

See also British leafminers distribution map.

Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland (Ireland's NBDC interactive map).

Distribution elsewhere: Continental Europe including Romania (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea), Germany and The Netherlands (Bladmineerders van Europa).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Luzula pilosa, Luzula sylvatica

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Ichneumonoidea  
Pholetesor circumscriptus (Nees, 1834) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Pholetesor viminetorum (Wesmael, 1837) Braconidae: Microgastrinae


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 07-Aug-2017  Brian Pitkin Top of page