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


Stigmella ulmivora (Fologne, 1860)
[Lepidoptera: Nepticulidae]

Nepticula ulmivora Fologne, 1860. Ent. Weekly Intell. 8: 92.
Stigmella ulmivora
(Fologne, 1860).

Leaf-miner: The frass is linear in early part of mine (British leafminers).

Egg at the underside of the leaf, generally near a vein. The mine is s slender corridor. Frass in its first part in a narrow central line. The frass pattern in the later segment is very variable: sometimes in a narrow central line, sometimes broadly dispersed or even coiled. Especially in the latter case confusion with St. lemniscella is hard to avoid. The only reliable character that remains then is that the exit slit is in the lower epidermis (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 green. The larva exits on the underside of the leaf (British leafminers).

Blue green (amber in lemmiscella); 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 not illustrated in UKMoths (check for update). The species is included in

Hosts in Great Britain and Ireland:

Ulmus       British leafminers
Ulmus glabra Wych Elm British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant
Ulmus procera English Elm British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Pitkin & Plant

Hosts elsewhere:

Ulmus       Belgian Lepidoptera
Ulmus glabra Wych Elm British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Ulmus x hollandica Dutch Elm   Bladmineerders van Europa
Ulmus laevis European White-elm   Bladmineerders van Europa
Ulmus minor Small Leaved Elm British Wild Flowers by John Somerville et al. Bladmineerders van Europa
Ulmus pumila     Bladmineerders van Europa

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

Time of year - adults: Currently unknown.

Distribution in Great Britain and Ireland: Britain including Anglesey, Bedfordshire, Breconshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Dorset, East Cornwall, East Gloucestershire, East Kent, East Norfolk, East Suffolk, Glamorgan, Hertfordshire, Huntingdonshire, Isle of Wight, Leicestershire, Middlesex, North Hampshire, North Somerset, Northamptonshire, North Northumberland, Shropshire, South-west Yorkshire, Stafford, Surrey, West Cornwall, Gloucestershire, West Norfolk and West Suffolk (NBN Atlas).

See also British leafminers distribution map.

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

Distribution elsewhere: Widespread in continental Europe including Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Corsica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Danish mainland, Estonia, Finland, French mainland, Germany, Hungary, Italian mainland, Latvia, Lithuania, Republic of Moldova, Norwegian mainland, Poland, Portuguese mainland, Romania, Russia - East, Sardinia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spanish mainland, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Ukraine, and Yugoslavia (Fauna Europaea).

NBN Atlas links to known host species:

Ulmus glabra, Ulmus x hollandica, Ulmus laevis, Ulmus minor, Ulmus procera

British and Irish Parasitoids in Britain and elsewhere:

Chrysocharis prodice (Walker, 1839) Eulophidae: Entedoninae
Cirrospilus vittatus Walker, 1838 Eulophidae: Eulophinae
Ichneumonoidea - Links to species no longer available  
Gnamptodon pumilio (Nees, 1834) Braconidae: Gnamptodontinae
Pholetesor laetus (Marshall, 1885) 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 12-Jul-2019  Brian Pitkin Top of page