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


Clavigesta purdeyi (Durrant, 1911)
[Lepidoptera: Tortricidae]

Pine Leaf-mining Moth

Rhyacionia purdeyi Durrant, 1911. Ent. mon. Mag. 47: 252.
Clavigesta purdeyi
(Durrant, 1911).

Leaf-miner: The larvae feed internally on the needles, overwintering in this stage (UKMoths).

The mine begins in the tip of a needle, and descends towards the base. The larva hibernates in its first needle. After hibernation the larva bores through the bud scales into the base of young needles, causing them to drop. Pupation outside the mine (Bladmineerders van Europa).

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).

Reddish brown, c. 5 mm (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 and the Encyclopedia of Life. The species is included in

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:

Pinus       Pitkin & Plant
Pinus       UKMoths

Hosts elsewhere:

Pinus contorta Lodgepole Pine   Belgian Lepidoptera
Pinus contorta var latifolia Lodgepole Pine var.   Bladmineerders van Europa
Pinus nigra Austrian Pine / Corsican Pine   Bladmineerders van Europa
Pinus nigra var. maritima      
Pinus sylvestris Scots Pine British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Belgian Lepidoptera
Pinus sylvestris Scots Pine British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: September- June or July (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Time of year - adults: July to September, the adults are attracted to light (UKMoths).

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Widely distributed in England and Wales (UKMoths) including Anglesey, Bedfordshire, Caernarvonshire, Denbighshire, Dorset, Durham, East Cornwall, East Norfolk, East Suffolk, Glamorgan, Hertfordshire, Huntingdonshire, Isle of Wight, Leicestershire, Merionethshire, Middlesex, North Essex, North Somerset, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire, South Lancashire, South Northumberland, South Wiltshire, Stafford, Surrey, West Cornwall, West Gloucestershire, West Norfolk, West Suffolk, Westmorland and Worcestershire (NBN Atlas) and the Channel Is. (Fauna Europaea).

Also recorded from the Republic of Ireland. See also Ireland's National Biodiversity Data Centre Map).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in north-west Europe including Belgium, Danish mainland, French mainland, Germany, Luxembourg and The Netherlands (Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Pinus contorta var latifolia, Pinus nigra, Pinus sylvestris

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Baryscapus endemus (Walker 1839) Eulophidae: Tetrastichinae

Pteromalus semotus (Walker, 1834)

Pteromalidae: Pteromalinae

External links: Search the internet:

Belgian Lepidoptera
Biodiversity Heritage Library
Bladmineerders van Europa
British leafminers
Encyclopedia of Life
Fauna Europaea
NBN Atlas
NHM UK Checklist

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Last updated 25-Jun-2019  Brian Pitkin Top of page