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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Elachista poae Stainton, 1855
[Lepidoptera: Elachistidae]

Sweet-grass Dwarf]


Elachista poae Stainton, 1855. Entomol. Ann.: 47.


Leaf-miner: Narrow, whitish (in the end often reddish brown) gallery of several decimeters in length, descending from the leaf tip to within the sheath of the leaf. Frass dispersed. Pupation external (Bladmineerders van Europa). The mine is downwards, towards the stem, and difficult to see. It is initially a pale green and later turns brown. When the larvae reach the water-line, they may then mine upwards or swap leaves (and then mine upwards). The frass is scattered in the mine (which distinguishes it from S.forficella, which has frass in a central strip). Found in the borders of steams, ponds etc. (British leafminers).

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 Bladmineerders van Europa.

Larva of Elaschista poae

Larva of Elachista poae
Image: © Charlie Strrets (British leafminers)

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

The pupa is in a slight cocoon, on an unmined leaf, about 60cms above the weater line. See Bland (1996a), Patocka (1999a), Patocka and Turcáni (2005a) (Bladmineerders van Europa). The pupa is illustrated in the Encyclopedia of Life.

Adult: The adult is illustrated in UKMoths. The adult is illustrated in the Encyclopedia of Life. The male genitalia, but not the female genitalia (check for update), are illustrated by the Lepidoptera Dissection Group.

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Poaceae        
Glyceria maxima Reed Sweet-grass British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Glyceria maxima Reed Sweet-grass British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers

Hosts elsewhere:

Poaceae        
Glyceria maxima Reed Sweet-grass British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: April-May and July-August (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Britain including Caernarvonshire (VC49), Denbighshire (VC50), East Gloucestershire (VC33), Glamorganshire (VC41), Merionethshire (VC48), Monmouthshire (VC35), North Essex (VC19), North Hampshire (VC12), North Somerset (VC6), North Wiltshire (VC7), Shropshire (VC40), South Somerset (VC5), South Wiltshire (VC8), Staffordshire (VC39), West Norfolk (VC28), West Suffolk (VC26) and Worcestershire (VC37) (NBN Gateway). See also British leafminers distribution map.

Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea). See also Ireland's NBDC interactive map.

NBN Grid Map:

NBN Grid Map

Elachista poae
NBN Grid Map : NBN Terms and Conditions

Maps are only displayed if the NBN server is active. N.B. Only publicly available records, if any, are shown by default

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden and The Netherlands (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Interactive Grid Maps of known host species:

Glyceria maxima

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chalcidoidea  
Closterocerus trifasciatus Westwood, 1833 Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Spaniopus dissimilis Walker, 1833 Pteromalidae: Pteromalinae
Ichneumonoidea  
Chelonus pusio Marshall, 1885 Braconidae: Cheloninae
Pholetesor circumscriptus (Nees, 1834) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Pholetesor phaetusa (Nixon, 1973) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Pholetesor viminetorum (Wesmael, 1837) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Gelis agilis (Fabricius, 1775) Ichneumonidae: Cryptinae
Dilleritomus filiformis (Strobl, 1901) Ichneumonidae: Ichneumoninae


External links: Search the internet:

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

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Last updated 21-Jul-2016  Brian Pitkin Top of page