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


Kessleria fasciapennella (Stainton, 1849)
[Lepidoptera: Yponomeutidae]

Lost Ermel

Zelleria fasciapennella Stainton, 1849. Syst. Cat. Brit. Tin. Pteroph.: 22.
Kessleria fasciapennella
(Stainton, 1849).

Leaf-miner: Initially mines a leaf. The upper surface mine is usually adjacent to the leaf margin and gently sinuous with irregularly scattered frass (as shown, in vacated mines). Occasionally the mines may widen to form small blotches. After the leaf is mined the larva feeds, in a web, on the rosette leaves and stem. This web is made at the base of the plant, amongst the leaf litter and moss. This is the second record of this species since the mid-nineteenth in the Britain. The larva previously had not been found in the British Isles (Beavan, S.D., Heckford, R.J., Prescott, T., Watson, D. & Young, M.R. (2015), Kessleria fasciapennella (Stainton, 1849) (Lepidoptera:Yponomeutidae): discovery of the larva in Scotland and consideration of prior Scottish records of the adult, Entomologist’s Gazette 67: 23–46) (British Leafminers).

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).

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

Adult: The adult is not illustrated in UKMoths (check for update). The species is included in and the Swedish Natural History Museum.

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:

Parnassia palustris Grass-of-Parnassus British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant

Hosts elsewhere:

Parnassia palustris Grass-of-Parnassus British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Britain (Fauna Europaea).

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Estonia, Finland, ? French mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Spanish mainland, Sweden and Switzerland (Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Host species unknown

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere: Currently unknown.

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 26-May-2019  Brian Pitkin Top of page