Birds, Leps, Observations & Generalities - the images and ramblings of Mark Skevington. Sometimes.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

When is a leafmine not a leafmine?

Well, when it's not on a leaf! I'm not sure if nutmines, fruitmines, seedmines etc are valid or accepted terms.

The first one here was found by complete accident during a nice afternoon walk at Fosse Meadows with Nichola. It's one that I have been actively looking for at other times without success. Nichola was pointing out to me some pustule-type galls on Field Maple leaves and asking what they were, and as I went to look I immediately saw this:

I'm as sure as I can be at this stage that this is the mine of Ectoedemia louisella, which mines from the samara 'wing' into the seed. I promptly set about looking for more, and found none.

Earlier in the day, I went to Croft Hill and actually got my bins out and did some birding for an hour or so. Redstart was the hoped-for target, but no joy on that front. I did find x2 juv Spotted Flycatchers, x2 male and x1 juv Blackcaps, x1 juv Whitethroat and x1 juv Lesser Whitethroat that were all acting like passage birds - all within a small area littered with gorse and hawthorn that forms a sort of 'wall' along side of the hill.

I then set about checking a few trees on the way back to the car for leafmines, and whilst checking an apple tree I found this apple:

Not sure what caused this - maybe Codling Moth larvae have a nibble on the outside first sometimes, although they actually look a bit dipterous. Nothing revealed when trying to dissect the fruit.

I did find some proper leafmines during the day, including the following. I should say that these are tentative/assumed identifications, though I am quite confident:

Bucculatrix bechsteinella - vacated mines on pear

Stigmella malella - vacated mine on apple

Bohemannia pulverosella - vacated mine on apple. There is actually a very short gallery on this mine, just along the edge of the top two serrations at the top of the blotch.

Apple Leaf Miner (Lyonetia clerkella)
Tenanted mine on ?Swedish Whitebeam? - note the segmented body of the larva.

Stigmella anomalella - tenanted mine on rosa


Gibster said...

Lovely! Though it was still named Etainia louisella last time I saw it. I used to see Buccs beccs on Hawthorn more than anything else, can't think that I've ever seen it on Pear. Glad you've got the mining bug, opens up a whole new dimension to moth recording, eh?

Skev said...

Yes, plus you can do it when the weather is pants too!