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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Phyllonorycter salictella (Zeller, 1846)
[Lepidoptera: Gracillariidae]

Willow Midget


Lithocolletis salictella Zeller, 1846. Linn. Ent. 1: 207, t. 1 fig. 16.
Argyromiges viminiella
Sircom, 1848. Zoologist: 2271.
Phyllonorycter salictella
(Zeller, 1846).


Comments:

Phyllonorycter viminiella (Sircom, 1848) is treated  as a junior synonym of Phyllonorycter salictella (Zeller, 1846) in Belgian Lepidoptera, Bladmineerders van Europa and Fauna Europaea. If the two names are indeed synonymous then the earliest, and therefore senior name, is Phyllonorycter salictella (Zeller, 1846).

The NBN Atlas treats viminiella (Sircom, 1848) as a subsp. of Phyllonorycter salictella (Zeller, 1846), along with the nominate subsp. salictella (Zeller, 1846).

UKMoths and Agassiz, Beavan and Heckford, 2013 in the Checklist only include Phyllonorycter viminiella (Sircom, 1848); and Agassiz, Beavan and Heckford, 2013 in the Checklist includes Phyllonoryter salictella sensu auctt. (nec. Zeller) as a junior synonym Phyllonorycter viminiella (Sircom, 1848).

The Lepidoptera Dissection Group include the male and female genitalia of Phyllonorycter salictella viminiella only; and the Hymenopterists recognise two species with a different suite of parasitoids.

According to Agassiz (pers. comm.) "The taxa [salictella and viminiella] look different" and "traditionally British specimens have been referred to viminiella".

Leaf-miner: Rather large, lower-surface tenntiform mine, generally against the leaf margin, often low in the leaf. Lower epidermis strongly folded; the mine is strongly contracted, causing the leaf margin to fold tube-like over the mine. All frass packed in a corner of the mine (Bladmineerders van Europa, as salictella).

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).

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

The pupa is illustrated in Bladmineerders van Europa.

Adult: The adult is illustrated in UKMoths (as Phyllonorycter viminiella). The male and female genitalia are illustrated by the Lepidoptera Dissection Group as Phyllonorycter salictella viminiella.

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Salicaceae        
Populus tremula Aspen British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant (as salictella)
Salix       Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)
Salix alba White Willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)
Salix cinerea Grey Willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)
Salix euxina or x fragilis Crack-willow or Hybrid Crack-willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)
Salix matsudana     Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)
Salix viminalis Osier British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)
Salix x sericans Broad-leaved Osier British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant (as viminiella)

Hosts elsewhere:

Salicaceae        
Salix alba White Willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix babylonica Weeping Crack-willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix daphnoides European Violet-willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix euxina or x fragilis Crack-willow or Hybrid Crack-willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix incana     Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix purpurea Purple Willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix triandra Almond Willow British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)
Salix viminalis Osier British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa (as salictella)

Time of year - larvae: Currently unknown.

Time of year - adults: The adults fly in May and June and again in August (UKMoths, as viminiella).

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: A species generally inhabiting wetland habitats, the distribution of this moth extends throughout England and Wales and into southern Scotland and there are scattered records from Ireland and northern Scotland (UKMoths, as Phyllonorycter viminiella) including Carmarthenshire, Cheshire, Derbyshire, East Suffolk, Glamorgan, Leicestershire, Shropshire, Stafford, Warwickshire, West Norfolk and West Suffolk (NBN Atlas).

See also British leafminers distribution map (as viminiella).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Republic of Moldova, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Portuguese mainland, Romania, Russia - Central, North and Northwest, Slovakia, Spanish mainland, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Ukraine. Also recorded in East Palaearctic (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea, as salictella).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Salix alba, Salix babylonica, Salix cinerea, Salix daphnoides, Salix fragilis, Salix matsudana, Salix purpurea, Salix x sericans (= Salix x smithiana), Salix triandra, Salix viminalis

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chalcidoidea  
Ageniaspis fuscicollis (Dalman, 1820) Encyrtidae: Encyrtinae
Achrysocharoides niveipes (Thomson, 1878) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Chrysocharis phryne (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Pediobius alcaeus (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Cirrospilus elegantissimus Westwood, 1841 Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Cirrospilus diallus Walker, 1838 Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Ichneumonoidea  
Coloneura stylata Förster, 1862 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Colastes braconius Haliday, 1833 Braconidae: Exothecinae
Pholetesor nanus (Reinhard, 1880) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Scambus inanis (Schrank, 1802) Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae


External links: Search the internet:

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

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Last updated 14-Aug-2017  Brian Pitkin Top of page