Plant Parasites of Europe

leafminers, galls and fungi

Elachista kebneella

Elachista kebneella (Traugott-Olsen & Nielsen, 1977)

Lepidoptera, Elachistidae


The habitat is shady, old conifer forest with thickmoss layer. The development of the larva takes two years. The larva starts mining during October in a leaf developed during the same year. The mine starts from the middle of the length of the leaf and is directed upwards. During the autumn themine is 5–8 cm long, weakly visible, with a line of frass. The larva hibernates within this mine for the first time. It continues mining during the spring in the same leaf. By the end of June the mine occupies the whole width of the leaf, and is turned downwards after reaching the tip of the leaf.Then the narrow initial mine is visible as pale. In the broad later stage of the mine there are two separate packages of frass visible. During mid-summer the larva does not feed continuously, but is hiding within the mine and is difficult to observe. It mines until August – September, and the mine is finally 12–18 cm long and resembles a lot other withered leaves of thehost plant. The larva hibernates within the mine for the second time. There can be 2–3 larvae in the same tuft of the host plant. The
larva pupates on the leaf, and is attached to the surface with a silken girdle and a pair of spur groups under segment 9. [copied from Kaila & Sippola].


Cyperaceae, monophagous

Carex digitaca, ? pediformis


Not known from the Benelux countries (Fauna Europaea, 2013).

distribution within Europe

Northern parts of Sweden, Finland, and Russia (Fauna Europaea, 2013).

larva and pupa

illustrated by Kaila & Sippola; larva bone-coloured with a pale and two dirty-red length lines.


Elachista saarelai Kaila & Sippola 2010.


Kaila & Sippola (2010a), Parenti & Pizzolato (2015a), Parenti & Varalda (1994a).


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