Leaf-miner: The larva feeds in a leaf-mine to begin with, then later feeds externally
on the leaves, shrivelling and blanching or browning them (UKMoths).
an extremely fine corridor along the leaf margin; these mines mainly
in the lower leaves. Frass in a narrow central line. The larva can
leave its mine and restart elsewhere. Older larvae live free, and
feed by slicing open the margin of a leaf segment near its tip and
eating away as much tissue as it can reach (to about one third of
its body length). The result is a number of full depth blotch mines.
When the larva has become too large even for this strategy, its
starts to feed freely on the leaf (Bladmineerders van Europa).
mines and larvae are illustrated in British
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).
Twice during its growth, it spins a white cocoonet in which it moults
its skin. The cocoonet is constructed on the upper surface of a
leaf, where it is easily detected. If held up to the light, the
larva, or its cast skin retaining the larval shape, can be seen
mining larva is amber yellow (intestine greenish as usual), head
and prothoracic shield brown; the chaetotaxy is described by Klimesch
(1942a) (Bladmineerders van Europa).
Pupa: The pupae of moths have visible head appendages, wings and legs which lie in sheaths (see examples).
The larva pupates in a distinctive whitish ribbed cocoon (UKMoths).
The adult is illustrated in UKMoths.
genitalia are illustrated by the Lepidoptera Dissection Group.
Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:
of year - larvae: April and May and again in July (UKMoths;
of year - adults: May and June, then July to August (UKMoths).
in Great Britain & Ireland: Fairly widespread in England
including Lancaster (Greater Manchester, Flixton), Chester (UKMoths),
Suffolk (Thetford) (British
leafminers); Bedfordshire (VC30), Cambridgeshire (VC29), Cheshire (VC58), East Suffolk (VC25),
North Hampshire (VC12), Shropshire (VC40), South Essex (VC18), South Wiltshire (VC8), Staffordshire (VC39),
Warwickshire (VC38), West Norfolk (VC28), West Suffolk (VC26) and Worcestershire (VC37) (NBN
See also British
leafminers distribution map.
recorded in the Republic of Ireland (Karsholt and van Nieukerken
in Fauna Europaea). See also Ireland's NBDC interactive map.
NBN Grid Map:
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elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria,
Belarus, Belgium, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, French
mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania,
Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania, Russia - Central, East, North
and Northwest, Slovakia, Sweden, 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: