Leaf-miner: The highly distinctive, violet or purplish spiral mines of this
species are often the key to its discovery. They can be found on
leaves, often several to a leaf. After the initial leaf-mining phase,
the larva feeds externally on the underside of the leaves, creating
small feeding windows, before pupating in a ribbed cocoon typical
of the Bucculatriginae (UKMoths).
narrow corridor, densely wound, amost entirely filled with purplish
brown frass. The last 1 to 2 cm of the corridor are free from the
spiral, and almost straight. At this point the mine is left and
the larvae continue to live free on the leaf, causing window feeding.
The empty larval chamber, obviously free from frass, is conspicuousy
slender. The egg, in the very centre of the spiral, is at the leaf
lower side, as is the exit from the mine (Bladmineerders van Europa).
leaf-mine is also 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).
The larva is illustrated in British
Pupa: The pupae of moths have visible head appendages, wings and legs which lie in sheaths (see examples).
The cocoon is illustrated in British
The adult is illustrated in UKMoths. The male
genitalia are illustrated (as
frangulella) by the Lepidoptera Dissection Group.
Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:
of year - larvae: August and September (UKMoths).
of year - adults: June and July (UKMoths;
in Great Britain & Ireland: Mainly in the southern half
of England, including Suffolk (Elveden Forest) (UKMoths),
Hampshire (Fleet) (British
leafminers); Cambridgeshire (VC29), Dorset (VC9), East Cornwall (VC2), East Norfolk (VC27),
East Suffolk (VC25), Glamorganshire (VC41), North Devon (VC4), North Hampshire (VC12), North Somerset (VC6),
South Devon (VC3), South Wiltshire (VC8), Surrey (VC17), West Norfolk (VC28) and West Suffolk (VC26) (NBN
Gateway), with occasional
scattered colonies further north (UKMoths).
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,
Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, Finland,
French mainland, Hungary, Italian mainland, Kaliningrad Region,
Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania,
Russia - Central and Northwest, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland, The
Netherlands, Ukraine and Yugoslavia (Karsholt and van Nieukerken
in Fauna Europaea).
NBN Interactive Grid Maps of known host species:
British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere: