Plant Parasites of Europe

leafminers, galls and fungi

Rhamphus pulicarius

Rhamphus pulicarius (Herbst, 1795)

Rhamphus pulicarius: mine on Salix cinerea

Salix cinerea, Belgium, prov. Liège, Flémalle-Haute © Jean-Yves Baugnée

Rhamphus pulicarius: mine on Salix cinerea, with larva

when the mine is lighted from behind, the oval larva with its dark head and prothorax is is clearly visible.

Rhamphus pulicarius mine

Salix alba, Diemen

Rhamphus pulicarius mines

Betula pubescens, Duin en Kruidberg

Rhamphus pulicarius mines

Betula pendula, Wolfheze

Rhamphus pulicarius: mine on Salix repens

Salix repens, Belgium, prov. West Flanders, Oostduinkerke, Ter Yde © Stéphane Claerebout: the larva hibernates in the mine

Rhamphus pulicarius: hibernating larva

hibernating larva


Generally small, upper-surface, pear-shaped mines, half of their surface stuffed with frass. In the frass-free part an oval, flattened larva. The larva hibernates in the fallen leaf, pupates in the mine. Often several mines in a leaf. The weevils eat, prior to oviposition, a large number of tiny holes in the leaves (maturation feeding; Kleine, 1924-25a).

host plants

Narrowly polyphagous

Betula nana, pendula, pubescens; Myrica gale; Populus alba, nigra, tremula; Salix alba, aurita, babylonica, caprea, cinerea, daphnoides, x fragilis, hastata, pentandra, purpurea, repens, triandra, viminalis.


Larvae in August-October; rather common, but not very conspicuous.


BE recorded (, 2010).

NE recorded (Heijerman, 1993a).

LUX recorded (Ellis, Kautenbach).

distribution within Europe

From Ireland to Italy and Greece and from Poland to France (Fauna Europaea, 2007).



As the pictures show, these mines are not surrounded by a green island when in yellowing leaves.

Sometimes the mines are considerably larger in proportion to the size of the larva. Hering (1957a) seems to assume that this is a normal continuation of the development. However, frequently several mines co-occur in one leaf, and this should result now and then in completely mined-out leaves. Such leaves have never been encountered.


Salix aurita, Groote Peel


Ahr (1966a), Bachmaier (1965a), Buhr (1933a, 1964a), Caillol (1954a), Colonnelli, Osella & Cornacchia (2011a), Compte (1981a), van Frankenhuyzen & Houtman (1972a), van Frankenhuyzen Houtman & Kabos (1982a), Graham (2014a), Haase (1942a), Heijerman & van der Leij (1997a), Hering (1927b, 1930a, 1957a), Kleine (1924a/1925a), Kozlov, van Nieukerken, Zverev & Zvereva (2013a), Maček (1999a), Menet (2012a), Morris (1982a), Nowakowski (1954a), Podlussány (2007a), Rheinheimer & Hassler (2010a), Robbins (1991a), Skala & Zavřel (1945a), Sønderup (1949a), Tempère (1982a), Viramo (1962a), Vorst (2010a), van Wielink (2020a), Yunakov, Nazarenko, Filimonov & Volovnik (2018a), Zoerner (1969a, 1970a).

Last modified 25.xi.2023