October is a good month to check out life on leaves (and I’ll be writing some posts about the various leaf mines I’ve been finding) but today I want to show you a couple of gall species that are new to me. The first is quite common and easy to find, the second perhaps less so.
The first species is Aceria macrochela, a microscopic mite that spends its larval life in these tiny bumps on the leaves of Field maple (Acer campestre). You can read more about them and see more images on the mighty Nature Spot website.
And the second is also a mite, this one called Stenacis euonymi, whose larvae make their homes in the rolled-up edges of leaves on Spindle (Euonymus europaeus). If you have trouble with tree identification, as I often do, this is a good time to look for these as the gloriously obvious fruit of the Spindle are easy to spot.
Looking on the NBN (Nature Biodiversity Network) Atlas I see there are currently only 112 UK records for this species (113 including mine, which doesn’t show yet) but that’s probably due to it being under-recorded, so if you spot these, please do record your sighting.