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


Thrypticus bellus Loew, 1869
[Diptera: Dolichopodidae]

Thrypticus bellus Loew, 1869b. Beschr. europ. Dipt. 1: 303.

Leaf-miner: Pale coloured corridor (here and there with even paler segments). Pupation within the mine (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Larva: The larvae of flies are leg-less maggots without a head capsule (see examples). They never have thoracic or abdominal legs. They do not have chewing mouthparts, although they do have a characteristic cephalo-pharyngeal skeleton (see examples), usually visible internally through the body wall.

Body segments with thick transverse ridges, that bear small teeth, enabling the larva to brace itself in the mine. Not only the anterior and posterior pairs of spiracula, known in the Acalyptrate Diptera are present, but also six pairs inbetween (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Puparium: The puparia of flies are formed within the hardened last larval skin or puparium and as a result sheaths enclosing head appendages, wings and legs are not visible externally (see examples).

Comments: Chandler (1978) did not indicate whether his host record was British or Foreign and is therefore included under 'Hosts in Britain' and 'Hosts elsewhere'.

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:


? Juncus

      Chandler, 1978: 221

Hosts elsewhere:


? Juncus

      Chandler, 1978: 221
Juncus       Dyte, 1993
Juncus       Hering, 1957
Juncus       Bladmineerders van Europa
Phragmites       Dyte, 1993
Phragmites       Hering, 1957

Time of year - mines: September-October (Hering, 1957).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Widespread in Britain including Ayrshire, Cambridgeshire, Cardiganshire, Carmarthenshire, Derbyshire, Dorset, Durham, East Kent, East Suffolk, Glamorgan, Herefordshire, Huntingdonshire, Leicestershire, Mid-west Yorkshire, Monmouthshire, Mongomeryshire, North Lincolnshire, North Wiltshire, Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Radnorshire, South Hampshire, South Lancashire, South Wiltshire, South-east Yorkshire, South-west Yorkshire, West Cornwall, West Gloucestershire, West Kent, West Suffolk and Westmorland (NBN Atlas).

Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland (Pollett, 2004 in Fauna Europaea).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including The Netherlands (de Meijere, 1939), Belgium (Meuffels, Pollet and Grootaert, 1991), Austria, ? Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, European Turkey, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Greeze, Hungary, Italian mainland, ? Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia - Central, ? East, North and ? Northwest, Slovakia, ? Slovenia, Spanish mainland, Sweden, ? Ukraine and Yugoslavia (Pollett, 2004 in Fauna Europaea).

Also recorded from East Palaearctic, North Africa and Oriental region (Pollett, 2004 in Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Host species unknown

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere: Currently unknown.

External links: Search the internet:
Biodiversity Heritage Library
Bladmineerders van Europa
British leafminers
Encyclopedia of Life
Fauna Europaea
NBN Atlas
NHM UK Checklist
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