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


Coleophora gryphipennella (Hübner, 1796)
[Lepidoptera: Coleophoridae]

Rose Case-bearer

Tinea gryphipennella Hübner, 1796. Samml. Europ. Schmett. 8: 68, pl. 30 fig. 206.
Coleophora gryphipennella
(Hübner, 1796).

Leaf-miner and case-bearer: The larva feeds on rose, building successively larger portable cases from cut-out leaf fragments; September 3mm, October to April 6mm. In mid-April the third and final, 6 or 7 mm, case is formed. At first it is spatulate with a bivalved anal opening and serrate dorsal keel formed from a leaf margin. During May, the case is expanded dorsally, becoming cylindrical with a trivalved anal opening. The expansion may conceal the dorsal serration (UKMoths).

The leaf damage and case are also illustrated in British leafminers.

The larvae, which hatch around the end of August make three cases during their lifetime. The final one, which they occupy after the hibernation, is a laterally flattened tubular leaf case with a dorsal toothed keel (remnant of the leaf margin from which the cases was excised). Mouth angle about 60° (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).

The larva is illustrated in Bladmineerders van Europa.

Coleophora gryphipennella larva,  dorsal
Coleophora gryphipennella larva, dorsal
Image: © Willem Ellis (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. The species is included in

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:

Rosa canina Dog-rose British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Rosa canina Dog-rose British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Rosa canina Dog-rose British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. UKMoths

Hosts elsewhere:

Fragaria       Belgian Lepidoptera
Rosa       Belgian Lepidoptera
Rosa acicularis     Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa arkansana     Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa canina Dog-rose British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa ferruginea Red-leaved Rose British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa, as Rosa glauca
Rosa pendulina Alpine Rose   Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa pimpinellifolia Burnet Rose British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa rubiginosa Sweet-briar   Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa seraphini     Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa soulieana     Bladmineerders van Europa
Rosa tomentosa Harsh Downy-rose   Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: Late August to late October, then April to mid May.

Time of year - adults: The adult occurs in late June - July, flying at dusk and early morning; males will assemble to an unmated female until 9 a.m. It can also be attracted to light at night (UKMoths).

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Apart from the far north of Scotland, it is common over most of Britain & Ireland where roses grow (UKMoths) including Anglesey, Bedfordshire, Breconshire, Buckinghamshire, Caernarvonshire, Cambridgeshire, Cardiganshire, Carmarthenshire, Cheshire, Derbyshire, Dorset, Dumfriesshire, East Gloucestershire, East Kent, East Norfolk, East Ross, East Suffolk, Elgin, Flintshire, Glamorgan, Herefordshire, Hertfordshire, Huntingdonshire, Isle of Wight, Kincardineshire, Linlithgow, Merionethshire, Mid-west Yorkshire, North Ebudes, North Essex, North Hampshire, North Northumberland, North Somerset, North Wiltshire, North-west Yorkshire, Pembrokeshire, Shropshire, South Hampshire, South Northumberland, South Somerset, South Wiltshire, South-east Yorkshire, South-west Yorkshire, Stafford, Surrey, West Cornwall, West Gloucestershire, West Kent, West Lancashire, West Norfolk, West Suffolk, Westmorland and Worcestershire (NBN Atlas).

Also recorded in the Republic of Ireland (Fauna Europaea and National Biodiversity Data Centre Map).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and The Netherlands (Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Rosa canina, Rosa ferruginea, Rosa pendulina, Rosa pimpinellifolia, Rosa rubiginosa, Rosa tomentosa

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Ichneumonoidea - Links to species no longer available  
Lytopylus rufipes (Nees, 1814) Braconidae: Agathidinae
Coloneura stylata Förster, 1862 Braconidae: Alysiinae
Ascogaster rufipes (Latreille, 1809) Braconidae: Cheloninae
Colastes braconius Haliday, 1833 Braconidae: Exothecinae
Dolichogenidea breviventris (Ratzeburg, 1848) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Protapanteles triangulator (Wesmael, 1837) Braconidae: Microgastrinae
Diadegma armillatum (Gravenhorst, 1829) Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae
Diadegma holopygum (Thomson, 1887) Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae
Gelis agilis (Fabricius, 1775) Ichneumonidae: Cryptinae
Itoplectis maculator (Fabricius, 1775) Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae
Diadegma holopygum (Thomson, 1887) Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae

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

Find using Google
Find using Google Scholar
Find images using Google

XHTML Validator
Last updated 11-Jul-2019  Brian Pitkin Top of page