Leafmining caterpillars

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Citrus - Phyllocnistis citrella; Groundnut and soybean - Aproaerema modicella; noch weiter recherchieren!

Georg Goergen (Courtesy of Ecoport, www.ecoport.org)
Is this a Minor Pest?
Minor Pest Title

Leafmining caterpillars

Minor Pest Description

The groundnut leafminer (Aproaerema modicella) adult is a small greyish moth, with a full wing span of up to 18 mm. Eggs are laid singly on the underside of the leaves of groundnut, soybean and other leguminous plants. Caterpillars are 6 mm long at the time of pupation, and rarely exceed 8 mm in length. Young caterpillars mine the leaves; later as caterpillars get older they exit the mine to web together several leaflets.


Damaged leaves become brownish, rolled and desiccated, which results in early defoliation and affects the growth and yield of the plants.


This leafmining caterpillar is a pest of groundnut and soybean in South and Southeast Asia and has recently invaded Africa. It has become a major pest of groundnuts in several African countries and has also been reported causing damage to soybeans in Uganda. Some farmers have reported a 30% yield loss.

Minor Pest What to do.
  • Plant during the first short rains when normally the miner population is low.
  • Avoid drought stress by irrigating or sowing so as to avoid periods when drought is likely. Plants that are drought stressed are much more susceptible to leafminer attack than irrigated plants.
  • Monitor plants regularly, particularly when intercropped with or planted near groundnuts. In India, soybean plants have been recommended as trap crops to divert these leafminers from groundnuts.
  • Treat with neem products as soon as infestation is detected. Early applications of neem products have been effective in India and Uganda.
Minor Pest Position
Minor Pest Firstcontent
Pest Type
Host Plants