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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Stigmella atricapitella (Haworth, 1828)
[Lepidoptera: Nepticulidae]

Black-headed Pigmy


Tinea atricapitella Haworth, 1828. Lep. Brit.: 585.
Stigmella atricapitella
(Haworth, 1828).


Leaf-miner: First generation, short gallery, frass in thick line. Second generation, longer gallery, frass in narrower line (British leafminers).

Oviposition at under- or upperside, usually well away from the leaf margin. The mine is a short, rather broad and quite tortuous corridor. In the first half the frass forms a very narrow central line; in the second half the frass is dispersed more widely, but never filling more than one third of the width of the gallery (Bladmineerders van Europa).

It is recommended that you try to rear out the adults to be certain of their identity.

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 a whitish-yellow and has dark prothoracic sclerites, which help distinguish it from S. roborella, with a pale head only (British leafminers).

Yellow. The larva is described by Gustafsson and van Nieukerken (1990a). The larva has dark coloured sclerites in the prothorax; uncertain of this is a constant character (Bladmineerders van Europa).

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

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

Hosts in Great Britain & Ireland:

Fagaceae        
Quercus       British leafminers
Quercus cerris Turkey Oak British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Quercus frainetto     British leafminers
Quercus petraea Sessile Oak British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Quercus robur Pedunculate Oak British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant

Hosts elsewhere:

Fagaceae        
Quercus cerris Turkey Oak British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Quercus petraea Sessile Oak British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Quercus pubescens Downy Oak   Bladmineerders van Europa
Quercus pyrenaica Pyrenean Oak   Bladmineerders van Europa
Quercus robur Pedunculate Oak British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: June - July, September - November (British leafminers).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain & Ireland: Widespread in the Britain including Anglesey (VC52), Banffshire (VC94), Bedfordshire (VC30), Buckinghamshire (VC24), Caernarvonshire (VC49), Cambridgeshire (VC29), Derbyshire (VC57), East Kent (VC15), East Norfolk (VC27), East Ross (VC106), East Suffolk (VC25), East Sutherland (VC107), Easterness (VC96), Elgin, Glamorganshire (VC41), Herefordshire (VC36), Hertfordshire (VC20), Huntingdonshire (VC31), Kincardineshire (VC91), Middlesex (VC21), North Aberdeenshire (VC93), North Essex (VC19), North Hampshire (VC12), North Somerset (VC6), North Wiltshire (VC7), Northamptonshire (VC32), Shropshire (VC40), South Aberdeenshire (VC92), South Lancashire (VC59), South Wiltshire (VC8), Staffordshire (VC39), Warwickshire (VC38), West Gloucestershire (VC34), West Kent (VC16), 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

Stigmella atricapitella
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, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, ? Estonia, French mainland, Germany, Greek mainland, Hungary, Italian mainland, Lithuania, Macedonia, Madeira, Norwegian mainland, Portuguese mainland, Romania, Sicily, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spanish mainland, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Ukraine. Also recorded in Near East (Karsholt and van Nieukerken in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Interactive Grid Maps of known host species:

Quercus cerris, Quercus frainetto, Quercus petraea, Quercus pubescens, Quercus pyrenaica, Quercus robur

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chalcidoidea  
Chrysocharis acoris (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Chrysocharis prodice (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Derostenus gemmeus Westwood, 1840 Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Derostenus punctiscuta Thomson, 1878 Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Cirrospilus diallus Walker, 1838 Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Pnigalio agraules (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Ichneumonoidea  
Adelius viator (Förster, 1851) Braconidae: Cheloninae
Mirax rufilabris Haliday, 1833 Braconidae: Miracinae


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
Find using Google
Find using Google Scholar
Find images using Google


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Last updated 18-Sep-2016  Brian Pitkin Top of page