Horse chestnut leaf miner

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Horse chestnut leaf miner (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

The caterpillar of the horse chestnut leaf-mining moth has munched its way across most of England and Wales (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

In the UK, this was first found in London in 2002. While it does not affect tree health, it does afflict the appearance of horse chestnut trees, and can cause public concern.

What are horse chestnut leaf miners?


  • Shrivelled, browned leaves, shedding well before normal leaf fall in autumn
  • Damage affects tree appearance but not tree health, so there is no reason to fell. Trees survive repeated infestations and produce leaves normally the following year


  • Larvae of the moth Cameraria ohridella which mine within the leaves – up to 700 mines have been recorded on a single leaf


  • First reported in Macedonia in the 1970s, but has now spread through central and eastern Europe
  • First seen in England in 2002 and now present across most of south-central England, East Anglia and the Midlands, spreading at 40-60 km a year

Report it

If you think you’ve spotted this disease please inform the Forestry Commission using the Tree Alert reporting tool. Three good-quality digital photographs are required to aid identification.

For more information visit the Forestry Commission.

Trees face huge challenges

With more new pests and diseases reaching our shores tackling pests and diseases is now an urgent priority

Learn about the threats