larva mines the leaves creating an irregular blotch (UKMoths). Forms an upper surface mine, with the surounding area turning purple.
The frass is accumulated in one place in the mine and the larva may conceal itself under this (British
a branching corridor, later more an elongate upper-surface blotch
from the leaf base to the leaf margin, finally occupying a good
part of the leaf. Most frass is deposited in one section of the
mine, forming a crust below which the very agile larvae can retreat
(Bladmineerders van Europa).
|Mine of Scrobipalpula tussilaginis on Tussilago
Axmouth Undercliff, Devon
Image: © Bob Heckford
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).
The larva of tussilaginis is apple green; head and prothoracic plate dark brown; full-grown larva
with rose-red segment limits (Pelham-Clinton, 1989a) (Bladmineerders van Europa).
Pupa: The pupae of moths have visible head appendages, wings and legs which lie in sheaths (see examples).
The adult is illustrated in UKMoths by John Walters. The male genitalia, but not the female genitalia (check for update), are illustrated by the Lepidoptera Dissection
Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:
of year - larvae:
August - September, but two generations occur in Britain, in July
and October - November (Bladmineerders van Europa).
of year - adults: There are two generations, moths on the wing
in June and July and again in August and September (UKMoths; British
in Great Britain & Ireland: A scarce and very local species,
only discovered in Britain in 1983 where it was found on the coast
in south Devon. It is now known to occur in a few localities eastwards
to Hampshire on sparsely vegetated coastline (UKMoths;
South Devon and South Hampshire (NBN
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elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria,
Czech Republic, French mainland, Germany, Greek mainland, Hungary,
Italian mainland, Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia - East, Slovakia,
Slovenia, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Ukraine (Karsholt and
van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).
NBN Interactive Grid Maps of known host species:
British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere: