Only adult males of Liriomyza bryoniae, L. huidobrensis, L. sativae and L. trifolii can be identified with certainty on basis of their genitalia. Female adults, pupae and larvae can only be identified on the level of groups of species (L. bryoniae and L. huidobrensis vs. L. sativae and L. trifolii). Species identification in all developmental stages is possible using molecular biological techniques. Our method is a PCR amplification of a 790-bp fragment of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase II (COII) DNA followed by RFLP analysis. The method was tested on single larvae, pupae and adults and proved to be applicable to these three life stages. The specificity of the assay was assessed by comparing the results of the PCR-RFLP analysis with those of morphological analysis using 60 Liriomyza specimens. Molecular and morphological identification agreed for all specimens analysed. PCR-RFLP is a powerful diagnostic tool for rapid and reliable identification of all life stages of economically important Liriomyza species.