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


Ectoedemia hannoverella (Glitz, 1872)
[Lepidoptera: Nepticulidae]

Nepticula hannoverella Glitz, 1872. Stett. ent. Ztg.: 25
Ectoedemia hannoverella
(Glitz, 1872).

Galler and Leaf-miner: The initial mine is in the leaf petiole and later the mines form green islands in the leaf (British leafminers).

Oviposition in the petiole, c. a cm below the base of the leaf. The larva begins its life as a borer in the petiole, causing it to locally swell somewhat. Once the larva has reached the leaf disc it begins forming an elongate blotch between the leaf margin and the most lateral vein, or, more rarely, between the midrib and the first lateral vein. Frass in two stripes, parallel to the sides of the mine. Pupation external. The larvae feed only at night, retreating within the petiole at daytime. The larva can be lured into the mine by keeping the leaf in the dark for a while (Borkowski, 1969a). The arrangement of the frass in two stripes is the result of the regular movement of the larva (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).

Light yellow, no ventral plates; see Gustafsson and van Nieukerken (1990a) for a description (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:

Populus x canadensis Hybrid Black-poplar British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers
Populus nigra Black-poplar British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. British leafminers

Hosts elsewhere:

Populus x canadensis Hybrid Black-poplar   Belgian Lepidoptera
Populus x canadensis Hybrid Black-poplar   Bladmineerders van Europa
Populus nigra Black-poplar British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Belgian Lepidoptera
Populus nigra Black-poplar British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: September - November (British leafminers).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: South-east England including Ipswitch (British leafminers); Cambridgeshire, East Suffolk and West Suffolk (NBN Atlas).

See also British leafminers distribution map. The original mines were discovered in Suffolk by Jon Clifton and Tony Prichard. Shortly after this Neil Sherman found the mines on his site, in another part of Suffolk, which they originally thought were the mines of E. turbidella.

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia - Central and South, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spanish mainland, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Yugoslavia. Also recorded in the East Palaearctic and Near East (Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Populus x canadensis, Populus nigra

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Ichneumonoidea - Links to species no longer available  
Mirax rufilabris Haliday, 1833 Braconidae: Miracinae

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