• Agromyzidae;
  • Liriomyza huidobrensis;
  • immature stages;
  • cellulose acetate electrophoresis;
  • electrophoretic identification


The non-indigenous pest leaf miner Liriomyza huidobrensis and its close relatives L. bryoniae and L. strigata belong to a natural group. These species can be separated from one another by means of protein electrophoresis on a cellulose acetate membrane. The protocol for this diagnostic assay involves staining for two enzymes, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH) and leucine-glycine peptidase (PEP). Other leaf miner species that might also be found under glass, Chromatomyia syngenesiae, C. horticola and the non-indigenous L. trifolii and L. sativae, are clearly distinguishable from the L. huidobrensis group of species by this assay. The effect of parasitism on L. huidobrensis by Dacnusa sibirica was investigated and shown unlikely to cause misidentification of the leaf miner host. Results obtained from practical use of the assay to identify unknown specimens from ports and nurseries are compared with those obtained from flies kept in laboratory culture and used during development of the assay. No new variation was found for G6PDH. New PEP variation was found for both L. huidobrensis and L. bryoniae but this did not affect the integrity of the assay. A biochemical key to these agromyzid leaf miners is presented.