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


GENTIANELLA. Gentians. [Gentianaceae]

Six species of Gentianella are recorded in Britain. These include the native Autumn Gentian (G. amarella), Chiltern Gentian (G. germanica), Dune Gentian (G. uliginosa), Early Gentian (G. anglica), Field Gentian (G. campestris) and Fringed Gentian (G. ciliata). The BSBI provide a downloadable plant crib for Gentianella.

Dune Gentian (G. uliginosa), Autumn Gentian (G. amarella), Early Gentian (G. anglica) and Fringed Gentian (G. ciliata) are protected under Schedule 8 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act, 1981.

Only one British miner is recorded on Gentianella.

A key to the European miners recorded on Gentiana including Gentianella is provided in Bladmineerders van Europa.

Autumn Gentian - Gentianella amarella. Image: © Brian Pitkin
Autumn Gentian
Gentianella amarella

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

1 > Leaf-miner: Initially the larva mines a basal leaf, subsequently feeding in flower buds (which turn yellow), opened flowers and foliage. Full depth irregular blotch that may occupy an entire leaf. Frass in numerous, dispersed, brown grains. Some larvae remain in the mine until shortly before pupation, others leave the mine in an early stage and feed externally on the flower buds and developing fruits.

Mine of Stenoptilia zophodactylus on Gentiana sp. Image: © Willem Ellis (Bladmineerders en plantengallen van Europa)
Mine of Stenoptilia zophodactylus on Gentiana sp
Image: © Willem Ellis (Bladmineerders van Europa)

On Blackstonia, Centaurium and Gentiana, but not yet on Gentianella, in Britain and Blackstonia, Centaurium, Gentiana and Gentianella elsewhere. Widely distributed in southern Britain and continental Europe.

Stenoptilia zophodactylus (Duponchel, 1840) [Lepidoptera: Pterophoridae].

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