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


Elachista cingillella (Herrich-Schäffer, 1855)
[Lepidoptera: Elachistidae]

White-tipped Dwarf

Poeciloptilia cingillella Herrich-Schäffer, 1855
Elachista cingillella
(Herrich-Schäffer, 1855).

Leaf-miner: Gradually widening mine in the base of the blade; the sides very irregulary scalloped out. In the end the blade may be eaten out completely. When lit from behind the mine is not uniformly transparant, but rather yellowish green and mottled because the larva leaves parts of the leaf tissue uneaten, and does not feed full depth. Pupation external (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).

Described by Parenti (2005a). The larva is dark olive green, almost black (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Pupa: The pupae of moths have visible head appendages, wings and legs which lie in sheaths (see examples).

Described by Parenti (2005a) (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Adult: The adult is not illustrated in UKMoths (check for update). The species is included in

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:

Milium effusum Wood Millet British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant

Hosts elsewhere:

Bromopsis erecta Upright Brome  

Bladmineerders van Europa, as Bromus erectus

Dichanthium ischaemum     Bladmineerders van Europa
Milium effusum Wood Millet British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - larvae: September - April; larva overwinters in the mine (Bladmineerders van Europa).

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Britain including Herefordshire and West Gloucestershire
(NBN Atlas).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Finland, French mainland, Hungary, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Romania, Russia - East and North, Sweden and The Netherlands (Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Bromopsis erecta, Milium effusum

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Ichneumonoidea - Links to species no longer available  
Pholetesor elpis (Nixon, 1973) Braconidae: Microgastrinae

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 17-Oct-2019  Brian Pitkin Top of page