Miner Matters - First Anniversary issue <<back  home

Leaf mine website celebrates its first year
Little did we suspect that our discussions, just over a year ago would lead to a website - let alone a new Yahoogroup (ukleafminers) and newsletters such as this, with a European dimension. Our original intention was to merely pool our resources and make available what photos or scans we had. We thought that at some stage in the future we could put the images onto a CD! We've become a little more ambitious since then and at the next update will have over 300 leaf mining species illustrated.

We would like to thank you for your help and support so far and look forward optimistically to our second year and further development of the site.


A new British Agromyzid (Diptera) - Napomyza gymnostoma

Brian Pitkin has sent news from Peter Chandler of a new dipterous miner to Britain - Napomyza gymnostoma. It has been found in the West Midlands.  Peter says 'It remains to be seen whether this will become established and spread but it also occurs in Hungary, Germany, Slovakia and Austria so it shouldn't have any problems with our climate.  Host plants are said to be onion, chives and leeks, but it may be on other types of onion as well. The larvae are said to make linear mines along the leaves but not across them. When fully fed the larvae form brown puparia in the mines.'

Any suspected cases should be reported to the Plant Health and Seeds Inspectorate, Andrew Halstead at the RHS Wisley.

Brian goes on to say that 'according to Spencer (1990) the larva feeds from the oviposition site in the leaf down into the root where it pupates, although this is not what the communication suggests'.

Willem Ellis has pointed out that the taxonomy of this species is still not fully resolved in Europe as von Tschirnhaus (1999), in the checklist of the German Diptera, continues to keep gymnostoma in Phytomyza. He said that this species has  been recorded from the Netherlands as long ago as 1924 (by de Meijere).

It is worth bearing in mind that garlic, leeks and onions are also mined by Acrolepiopsis assectella - Lepidoptera (Yponomeutidae). These are found in the larval stage in May to June and August to October, causing damage to crops. The larvae initially mine the leaves and then forms a series of small holes, as it mines out the leaf, before it bores into the centre of the plant.

Newsletter of leafmines.co.uk                                                                                                                                                                    November 2003 January 2004