Plant Parasites of Europe

leafminers, galls and fungi

Coleophora vitisella

Coleophora vitisella Gregson, 1856

northern case-bearer

Coleophora vitisella case

Vaccinium vitis-idaea, Belgium; prov. Liège, Eupen, Brackvenn © Jean-Yves Baugnée

Coleophora vitisella mine

mine leaf, upperside

Coleophora vitisella mine

mined leaf, underside

Coleophora vitisella mine

mines, lighted from behind


Greyish black tubular composite leaf case of about 5-6 mm. The case is composed of numerous rings, each cut out of the lower epidermis of the host plant. The rear end is strongly curved, like the handle of a walking stick. Mouth angle 45°. The larva pupates in its case at the upperside of the leaf.

The development of the larva takes two years, with a diapause in early summer, when the plant develops new foliage. In the first year the cases consists only of the strongly curved part of the complete case.

host plants

Ericaceae, oligophagous

Pyrola; Vaccinium vitis-idaea.

Occurrence on Potentilla (Comarum) is xenophagy (Hering, 1957a).

Buhr (1937a) mentions in Mecklenburg also occurrence on Vaccinium oxyoccus.


Full-grown larvae in September – April (Emmet ao, 1996a).


BE recorded (Phegea, 2009).

NE recorded (Kuchlein & de Vos, 1999a; Microlepidoptera,nl, 2009).

LUX not recorded (Fauna Europaea, 2009).

distribution within Europe

From Fennoscandia and northern Russia to the Pyrenees and Italy, and from Britain to Romania.

parasitoids, predators

Necremnus metalarus.


Baldizzone, Tokár, Z & S Kovács (2004a), Buhr (1935b, 1937a), Deutsch (2012a), Emmet, Langmaid, Bland ao (1996a), Gebiola, Bernardo, Ribes & Gibson (2015a), Haase (1942a), Hartig (1939a), Hering (1957a), Huisman, Koster, van Nieukerken & Ulenberg (2004a), Ivinskis & Savenkov (1991a), Klimesch (1989a), Kozlov & Kullberg (2010a), Kuchlein & Donner (1993a), Landry ao (2013a), Patzak (1974a), Kuchlein & de Vos (1999a), Michaelis (1954a, 1983a), Nel (1992c), Razowksi (1990a), Robbins (1991a), Schmid (2019a), Sønderup (1949a), Szőcs (1977a), Toll (1962a).

Last modified 18.i.2023