EPPO Global Database

EPPO Reporting Service no. 01 - 2013 Num. article: 2013/012

First report of Antispila oinophylla in Italy

The NPPO of Italy recently informed the EPPO Secretariat of the first record of a new grapevine leafminer, Antispila oinophylla sp. nov. (Lepidoptera: Heliozelidae), on its territory. In summer 2007, unusual leaf mines were observed in a vineyard in Borgo Valsugana (Autonomous province of Trento). In Northern Italy, the only known grapevine leafminers were Holocacista rivillei (Antispila rivillei) a minor pest of grapevine occurring in Southern Europe and Western Asia, and Phyllocnistis vitegenella (Lepidoptera: Gracillariidae) a North American species recently introduced into Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland (see EPPO RS 2006/160 and RS 2012/032). Both H. rivillei and P. vitegenella are considered to be minor pests in vineyards. Because the leaf mines observed in Borgo Valsugana presented some differences compared with those caused by H. rivillei or P. vitegenella, the presence of a new species was suspected. Investigations (van Nieukerken et al., 2012) revealed that the grapevine leafminer found in Trentino was a distinct and new species, called Antispila oinophylla. These studies also demonstrated that A. oinophylla originates from North America. In its area of origin, this leafminer feeds on grapevine and various wild Vitis species. Surveys were carried out in Italy and showed that A. oinophylla only occurs in the vineyards of the following regions: Automonous province of Trento (Valsugana), Friuli-Venezia Giulia (province of Pordenone), Veneto (provinces of Belluno, Padova, Treviso, Verona, Vicenza). During these surveys, no significant damage to vineyards or impact on grape production was observed. Some grapevine varieties (e.g. Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Muscat) were found to be more attractive to the insect and thus moderately susceptible. Further studies are underway to evaluate the role of native parasitoids and of insecticide treatments that are already applied in vineyards to control other pests.
The situation of Antispila oinophylla in Italy can be described as follows: Present, detected in Autonomous province of Trento (Valsugana), Friuli-Venezia Giulia (province of Pordenone), Veneto (provinces of Belluno, Padova, Treviso, Verona, Vicenza).

According to van Nieukerken et al. (2012), the currently known host plants and geographical distribution of A. oinophylla are as follows:
  • Host plants: the main host of economic importance is grapevine (Vitis vinifera) but the insect can also feed on other wild Vitis species (V. aestivalis, V. labrusca, V. riparia, V. vulpina), as well as on Parthenocissus quinquefolia.
  • Geographical distribution
EPPO region: Italy (Trentino, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Veneto).
North America: Canada (Ontario, Québec), USA (Connecticut, Georgia, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Vermont). In the literature, there are previous records of another morphologically similar species, A. ampelopsifoliella, from Maine, Missouri and Ohio which may partly refer to A. oinophylla, but this remains to be verified.


NPPO of Italy (2012-07).
Van Nieukerken EJ, Wagner DL, Baldessari M, Mazzon L, Angeli G, Girolami V, Duso C, Doorenweerd C (2012) Antispila oinophylla (Lepidoptera, Heliozelidae), a new North American grapevine leafminer invading Italian vineyards: taxonomy, DNA barcodes and life cycle. ZooKeys 170, 29-77.