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


CALLISTEPHUS. China Aster. [Asteraceae]

Only one species of Callistephus, the introduced China Aster (C. chinensis), is recorded in Britain.

Seven British miners are recorded on Callistephus.

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

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

1a > Leaf-miner: A short linear mine in first instar, later producing a circular or oval blotch. Frass is excreted in a black mass prior to pupation; puparium firmly glued with frass within the mine (Spencer, 1976: 306).

Large, whitish, upper-surface blotch, preceded by a short corridor that often is overrun later by the developing blotch. The larva hardly produces any frass; the few grains that are present are black and rather coarse. But when the larva is about to pupate, it empties its intestine, which has the effect that the puparium is anchored in the mine by dried frass.

The initial gallery by the first instar larva then leads to a whitish blotch. The puparium is fixed to the inside of the mine by an accumulation of frass.

On Aster, Bellis and Erigeron in Britain and additional genera of Asteraceae elsewhere. Widespread in southern England and continental Europe. Also recorded in Canada, Argentina, South Africa, India, Australia and Papua New Guinea.

Calycomyza humeralis (von Roser, 1840) [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1b > Leaf-miner: Broad corridor overlying the midrib. The mine has a number of side branches that distally widen strongly, and may coalesce. Primary and secondary feeding lines very conspicuous. Pupation external, in soil.

Mine of Cornutrypeta spinifrons on Senecio ovalis. Image: © Willem Ellis (Source: Bladmineerders en plantengallen van Europa)
Mine of Cornutrypeta spinifrons on Senecio ovalis
Image: © Willem Ellis (Bladmineerders van Europa)

On Aster and Solidago in Britain, but not yet on Callistephus, in Britain and possibly also Cirsium elsewhere. In Britain Recently recorded only from Kent and Perth. There are old records (pre-1960) for Hereford and Lancaster.

Cornutrypeta spinifrons (Schroeder, 1913) [Diptera: Tephritidae].

1c > Leaf-miner: A distinctive mine primarily above mid-rib, with irregular short lateral offshoots into leaf blade. Pupation external (Spencer, 1972: 51 (fig. 172), 55; Spencer, 1976: 270, 271 (fig. 486)).

Branched, whitish, upper-surface corridor; main axis overlying the midrib; side branches overlying the main lateral veins. (In Campanula and Phyteuma the mine is much less branched, sometimes nothing more than a corridor on top of the midrib). Frass in rather long strings. Usually the mines begins as a long and narrow, shallow, tortuous lower-surface corridor that ends upon the midrib but otherwise is not associated with the leaf venation. Often this initial corridor is filled with callus, and then even less conspicuous. Pupation outside the mine.

A linear mine on the upper surface, usually following the midrib and showing side branches along the veins. The frass is in strings.

Liriomyza strigata larva,  lateral
Liriomyza strigata larva, lateral
Image: © Willem Ellis (Bladmineerders van Europa)

Polyphagous. On more than 40 host genera in 15 families, including Achillea, in Britain and elsewhere. Widespread throughout Britain. Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland. Widespread in continental Europe.

Liriomyza strigata (Meigen, 1830) [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1d > Leaf-miner: A short, irregular, linear upper surface mine on any part of the leaf. Also recorded from young pods (Bland, 1997a).

Long corridor mine. As a rule the first part of the mine is lower-surface, the later part upper-surface. Often the loops are so dense that a secondary blotch is the result. Because upper- and lower-surface corridor segments often cross, the mine obtains a strange array of transparant patches. There is no association with the midrib. Frass in strings and thread fragments. Pupation outside the mine; exit slit in upper epidermis.

Mine not associated with the veins or midrib of the leaf (It is this character which enables distinction from another Agromyzid pest species - Liriomyza huidobriensis). The larvae may leave one leaf (if not large enough) and enter another leaf, via the petiole). It exits the leaf to pupate through a semi-circular slit in the upper surface of the leaf.

Polyphagous. On 119 plant genera in 31 plant families of which only 4 plant genera in 2 plant families, but not yet on Callistephus, in Britain. Local, probably introduced to Britain. Widespread in continental Europe particularly in Botanical Gardens and glasshouses. Also recorded in Egypt.

Liriomyza bryoniae (Kaltenbach, 1858) [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1e > Leaf-miner: An irregular linear mine, which in small leaves can form a secondary blotch.

Long, upper-surface corridor, winding through the leaf and frequently crossing itself; in small leaves often a secondary blotch in the end. Frass in short strings and pearl chains. Pupation outside the mine.

An irregular gallery, sometimes crossing over, with black frass arranged as elongate very narrow streaks at the sides of the mine.

On Aster, Bellis and Solidago in Britain and additional genera of Asteraceae elsewhere. Widespread in Britain. Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland. Widespread and common in much of continental Europe.

Liriomyza pusilla (Meigen, 1830) [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1f > Leaf-miner: A long, winding leaf-mine on the upper surface of the leaf, with frass widely-spaced in conspicuous black lumps. Pupation internal, at the end of mine (Spencer, 1972b: 28 (fig. 68), 29).

On Solidago, but not yet on Callistephus, in Britain. On Aster, Callistephus, Erigeron, Sonchus, Solidago and Taraxacum elsewhere. Only recorded from Kent, Derby, Warwick and East Kent in Britain. Widespread in much of Europe. Also recorded in Japan, Canada and the U.S.A.

Ophiomyia maura (Meigen, 1838) [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

1g > Leaf-miner: Mine linear, whitish, both upper and lower surface. Pupation internal, at the end of the mine with the anterior spiracles projecting through the epidermis (Spencer, 1976: 433). Upper-surface, less often lower-surface corridor. Frass in isolated grains. Pupation within the mine, in a, usually lower-surface, pupal chamber. A long whitish upper surface corridor, which eventually goes lower surface.

Two highly polyphagous species of Chromatomyia, with indistinguishable mines, have been recorded in Britain. These are syngenesiae (Hardy) and horticola (Goureau) which can only be distinguished by the male genitalia. Both species are widespread in Britain and elsewhere, although syngenesiae is almost entirely restricted to Asteraceae. Records on Asteraceae not based on examination of male genitalia are treated in this account as Chromatomyia 'atricornis'.

Chromatomyia syngenesiae is recorded on Callistephus elsewhere but not yet on Callistephus in Britain.

Chromatomyia syngenesiae Hardy, 1849 [Diptera: Agromyzidae].

XHTML Validator Last updated 01-Jul-2019  Brian Pitkin Top of page