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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Epinotia tedella (Clerck, 1759)
[Lepidoptera: Tortricidae]

Common Spruce Bell

Phalaena tedella Clerck, 1759. Icones:1, pl. 10 fig. 13.
Epinotia tedella
(Clerck, 1759).

Leaf-miner: The larvae feed among the needles, mining when small, and later in an untidy spinning (UKMoths).

The larva completely mines a group of c. 15 needles. The larva penetrates the base of the needles. Most frass is deposited outside the mines. The mined needles are surrounded by a light spinning, especially around their bases and therefore do not drop quickly. Pupation external (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).

Larva light brown or dirty white with two reddish brown subrosal lines. Head and pronotum dark brown, anal plate greyish brown. Prolegs with c. 20 crochets in a single row (Bradley et al., 1979a; Swatschek, 1958a) (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 and the Encyclopedia of Life. The species is included in

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:

Picea       Pitkin & Plant
Picea abies Norway Spruce British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. UKMoths
Picea abies Norway Spruce British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Picea sitchensis Sikta Spruce British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers

Hosts elsewhere:

Picea abies Norway Spruce British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: August - October; hibernation as a full fed larva (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Time of year - adults: The moths fly in May and June and are attracted to light (UKMoths).

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Occupying woodland, the species is fairly common throughout the British Isles (UKMoths) including Anglesey, Ayrshire, Bedfordshire, Caernarvonshire, Cambridgeshire, Carmarthenshire, Cheshire, Cumberland, Denbighshire, Dorset, Dumfriesshire, Dunbartonshire, Durham, East Cornwall, East Gloucestershire, East Norfolk, East Ross, East Suffolk, East Sutherland, Easterness, Elgin, Flintshire, Glamorgan, Hertfordshire, Huntingdonshire, Isle of Wight, Kincardineshire, Leicestershire, Linlithgow, Merionethshire, Middlesex, Montgomeryshire, North Aberdeenshire, North Northumberland, North Somerset, Outer Hebrides, Pembrokeshire, Radnorshire, North Wiltshire, Shropshire, South Aberdeenshire, South Northumberland, South-west Yorkshire, Stafford, Surrey, West Cornwall, West Gloucestershire, West Norfolk, West Perthshire, West Suffolk, Westmorland, Wigtownshire and Worcestershire (NBN Atlas) and the Channel Is. and Ireland (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).

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

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Greek mainland, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania, Russia - Central, North and Northwest, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and The Netherlands. Also recorded in the East Palaearctic (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Picea abies

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Trichogramma evanescens Westwood, 1833 Trichogrammatidae: Trichogrammatinae
Therophilus clausthalianus (Ratzeburg, 1852) Braconidae: Agathidinae
Meteorus ictericus (Nees, 1811) Braconidae: Meteorinae
Choeras tedellae (Nixon, 1961) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Dolichogenidea lineipes (Wesmael, 1837) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Coleocentrus excitator (Poda, 1761) Ichneumonidae: Acaenitinae
Lissonota buccator (Thunberg, 1822) Ichneumonidae: Banchinae
Lissonota dubia Holmgren, 1856 Ichneumonidae: Banchinae
Lissonota folii Thomson, 1877 Ichneumonidae: Banchinae
Glypta tenuicornis Thomson, 1889 Ichneumonidae: Banchinae
Diadegma consumtor (Gravenhorst, 1829) Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae
Porizon transfuga (Gravenhorst, 1829) Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae
Exochus tibialis Holmgren, 1858 Ichneumonidae: Metopinae
Itoplectis alternans (Gravenhorst, 1829) Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae
Itoplectis maculator (Fabricius, 1775) Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae

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

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Last updated 18-Apr-2018  Brian Pitkin Top of page