Liriomyza blechi Spencer

Eiseman, Charles S., Lonsdale, Owen, Linden, John Van Der, Feldman, Tracy S. & Palmer, Michael W., 2021, Thirteen new species of Agromyzidae (Diptera) from the United States, with new host and distribution records for 32 additional species, Zootaxa 4931 (1), pp. 1-68: 24-25

publication ID

publication LSID


persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Liriomyza blechi Spencer


Liriomyza blechi Spencer  

( Fig. 73 View FIGURES 73–86 )

Material examined. MASSACHUSETTS: Hampshire Co., Florence , Mill River (42.336164, -72.679353), 20.viii.2020, em. 3.ix.2020, C.S. Eiseman, ex Mimulus ringens   , # CSE6562 GoogleMaps   , BG 1891588 (2♀); NEW YORK   : Orange Co., Cornwall , Black Rock Forest, 29.viii.2019, em. 10–12.ix.2019, C.S. Eiseman & J.A. Blyth, ex Plantago major   , # CSE5898   , BG 1881415 (1♀); NORTH CAROLINA   : Wake Co. , Morrisville, Lake Crabtree County Park,, em., T   . S. Feldman , ex Ruellia caroliniensis   , # CSE4709, CNC1144110–1144111 View Materials (2♁)   ; OKLAHOMA: Payne Co., Mehan , 36.013839°, -96.998103°, 13.vii.2018, em. by 29.vii.2018, M.W. Palmer, ex Ruellia strepens   , # CSE4966, CNC1643660 View Materials (1♁)   ; same collection, em. 16.vii.2018, # CSE4965, CNC934531 View Materials   (1♁).

Photographed mines. KANSAS: Riley Co., Konza Prairie Biological Station , 3.vii.2015, C.S. Eiseman, Ruellia humilis     ; MASSACHUSETTS: Middlesex Co., Lincoln Co., Drumlin Farm , 6.vii.2019, C.S. Eiseman, Plantago major     ; NORTH CAROLINA: Durham Co., Durham, Bobbitt Hole trail,, T. S. Feldman, Plantago rugelii, BG   1093459   ; WISCONSIN: Buffalo Co., Alma, S1287 State Road 88, 18.vii.2015, C.S. Eiseman, Plantago rugelii   [vacated mines]   .

Hosts. Acanthaceae   : Ruellia blechum   L., R. * caroliniensis (J.F.Gmel.) Steud.   , [ R. humilis Nutt.   ], R. * strepens   L.; Boraginaceae   : Heliotropium curassavicum   L.; Loganiaceae   : Spigelia anthelmia   L.; * Phrymaceae   : Mimulus ringens   L.; Plantaginaceae   : Plantago   * major   L., P. media   L. ( Lonsdale 2017a), [ P. rugelii Decne.   ], P. virginica   L.; Poaceae   : Digitaria sanguinalis   (L.) Scop. ( Lonsdale 2017a); Verbenaceae   : Phyla nodiflora   (L.) Greene ( Eiseman & Lonsdale 2018).

Leaf mine. ( Fig. 73 View FIGURES 73–86 ) According to Spencer & Stegmaier (1973), a number of larvae feed together on Ruellia blechum   , “forming a mine primarily along the mid rib with irregular extensions into the leaf blade.” Spencer & Steyskal (1986) described the mine on the same host as “an irregular blotch, normally but not exclusively associated with the midrib or one of the lateral veins.” Eiseman & Lonsdale (2018) described mines on Plantago virginica   as irregular whitish blotches with frass in discrete black grains and occasional small lumps. All mines we have seen on Ruellia   spp. have distinct primary and secondary feeding lines and present a brainlike or intestinelike appearance ( Fig. 73 View FIGURES 73–86 ). They likewise have frass in discrete black grains. Mines on Plantago   spp. sometimes have similar feeding lines, but much fainter. The two mines found on Mimulus ringens   were both entirely linear, with frass at first in closely spaced grains or beaded strips, and later in series of discrete, roundish particles interspersed with squiggly masses. The presumed L. blechi   mines we have seen on Spigelia anthelmia   begin as compact spirals and then open into irregularly contorted linear mines, in some cases compact enough to resemble the mines on Ruellia   , but with frass in an almost continuous line of closely spaced grains or beaded strips.

Puparium. Yellowish-brown to brown, formed within the leaf, with the anterior spiracles projecting through the lower epidermis.

Phenology and voltinism. We have collected leaf mines in late March (Florida), mid-June (North Carolina), mid-July (Oklahoma), and mid- to late August (Massachusetts and New York), with adults emerging within a few weeks in each case ( Eiseman & Lonsdale 2018).

Distribution. USA: DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, [KS], *MA, MD, MI, MS, *NC, NY, OH, *OK, PA, SC, SD, TX, VA, [WI], WV; Canada: AB, NL, ON, QC; Bermuda; Bolivia; Brazil; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Guadeloupe; Martinique.

Comments. Lonsdale (2017a) noted that the specimens he examined from “elm leaves” in Illinois and from Digitaria   in Florida “would be unusual rearing records, and are possibly incidental adult associations.” The label data for the latter specimens reads “Miami, 24.ix.1963, ex. Digitaria sanguinalis, K.A. Spencer.   ” These would seem to be the same specimens Spencer & Steyskal (1973) discussed under L. marginalis (Malloch)   : “Specimens bred from Digitaria sanguinalis   and from Panicum miliaceum   have the mesonotum shining black, but the genitalia do not entirely agree with those of marginalis   .” They unfortunately did not provide more specific data for these specimens, but this publication on Florida Agromyzidae   makes no other reference to Liriomyza   on Digitaria   . Monteiro et al. (2019) reported rearing L. blechi   from Poaceae   in Brazil ( Digitaria   sp., Panicum miliaceum   L., Paspalum   spp.), and noted that on these hosts the mines are linear with widely spaced frass, in contrast with mines on Dicliptera sericea   (= D. squarrosa Nees   , Acanthaceae   ) and Spigelia anthelmia   , which they stated “are similar to L. blechi   mines.” They also noted that in specimens reared from Poaceae   “the central area of the mesonotum is predominantly paler, almost orange, similar to description of L. marginalis   . However, the shape of aedeagus resemble which illustrated by Eiseman & Lonsdale (2018) to L. blechi   .” The genitalia of L. blechi   were not illustrated by Eiseman & Lonsdale (2018), and Lonsdale (2017a) was presumably the intended citation.


University of Newcastle


Tavera, Department of Geology and Geophysics