Tomato leafminer is a species of moth and a member of the gelechiidae family belonging to the Lepidoptera order. It is a serious pest of tomato crops in large parts of the world.
Damage to plants is caused by the larvaes (caterpillars) feeding on foliage and fruits. An unattended infection can easily become severe, resulting in up to 100% yield losses.
The caterpillars can attack ripe fruits, but they have a tendency to attack unripe, green fruits. Cherry tomato varieties are less likely to be affected.
Females can lay up to 250 eggs in her lifetime and will do so mainly on leaves. Optimal temperatures for tomato leafminer is between 25 to 35 degrees Celsius.
In the beginning, the most obvious signs show on the foliage in the form of tunnels that may resemble leafminer symptoms. Soon enough, the tunnels will become much larger and greater than leafminer tunneling, which appears substantially different.