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


ANEMONE. Anemones. [Ranunculaceae]

Wood Anemone (A. nemorosa) is the only native species of Anemone recorded in Britain. Introductions include Blue Anemone (A. apennina), Balkan Anemone (A. blanda), Japanese anemone (A. hupehensis) and Yellow Anemone (A. ranunculoides).

Three British miners are recorded on Anemone.

A key to the European miners recorded on Anemone is provided in Bladmineerders van Europa.


Wood Anemone - Anemone nemorosa. Image: © Brian Pitkin
Wood Anemone
Anemone nemorosa

Key for the identification of the known mines of British
insects (Diptera and non-Diptera) recorded on Anemone

1a > Leaf-miner: Mine linear but normally developing into secondary blotch, feeding confined to apex of a leaf segment (Spencer, 1972b: 70 (fig. 225); Spencer, 1976: 374, 375 (fig. 652)). Pupation normally external, but Lundquist (1947) records that 8 of 10 larvae pupariumted in the mine in Sweden.

On Anemone in Britain and elsewhere. Widespread in England and continental Europe. Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland

Phytomyza anemones Hering, 1925 [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1b > Leaf-miner: Mine narrow, whitish, linear, normally adjoining margin of leaf; in small leaves can become blotch-like (Spencer, 1972b: 91 (fig. 305); Spencer, 1976: 427, 429 (fig. 746)).

Mine of Phytomyza hendeli on Anemone nemerosa. Image: © Patrick Roper (British leafminers)
Mine of Phytomyza hendeli on Anemone nemerosa
Image: © Patrick Roper (British leafminers)

On Anemone in Britain and elsewhere. Somerset, East Kent and East Sussex in Britain. Widespread in central and western Europe.

Phytomyza hendeli Hering, 1923 [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1c > Leaf-miner: Larva forms a conspicuous white linear mine with frass in closely adjoining grains. Pupation external (Spencer, 1972b:70 (figs 229-230A), 75; Spencer, 1976: 481, 483 (figs. 846, 848A)).

Rather long, somewaht untidy, upper-surface corridor. Frass in many small grains that are close together of form pearl chains. Pupation outside the mine.

The frass, in the long upper-surface white corridor, look like strings of pearls. P.ranunculivora makes similar long linear mines but in this species the frass grains are separate.

The mine is also illustrated in the Encyclopedia of Life.

Phytomyza ranunculi puparium
Phytomyza ranunculi puparium
Image: © Willem Ellis (Bladmineerders van Europa)

On Ranunculus acris, Ranunculus bulbosus, Ranunculus ficaria, Ranunculus flammula, Ranunculus lingua, Ranunculus repens and Ranunculus sardous, but not yet on Anemone, in Britain and additional Ranunculus and Mysourus elsewhere. Common and widespread throughout England and Scotland in Britain. Widespread throughout Europe, ange extending to the Kirghiz Republic of the [former] U.S.S.R. Also recorded in Canada, Chile and Japan.

Phytomyza ranunculi (Schrank, 1803) [Diptera: Agromyzidae].


1c > Leaf-miner: Oviposition at the underside of a thick vein. From this point the larva makes a corridor that quickly widens into a full depth blotch, mostly in the distal half of the leaf. Frass initially in a central line, further on in scattered lumps. There is normally one mine per leaf.

The larvae of sawflies have at least six thoracic legs (although they may be reduced or absent), a head capsule and chewing mouthparts with opposable mandibles but no abdominal legs.

On Anemone in Britain and elsewhere. Distibution in Britain unknown. Widespread in continental Europe.

Endophytus anemones (Hering, 1925) [Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae].

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