Worldwide distribution. On sweet potato and related weeds. Usually, minor importance unless broad-spectrum insecticides used for e.g., sweet potato weevil control.
Larvae make silvery, snake-like, mines filled with frass; later, blotches occur developing into holes.
Eggs on leaves; larvae, up to 5.5 mm long, yellowish with pink spots along the back, developing into red, rounded, projections on all segments. Later, larvae exit the mines, living under silk threads on backs of leaves, and pupate. Adults, greyish brown, up to 4 mm long, 10 mm wingspan, fringed, with tufts of light yellow to brown hairs on the head.
Natural enemies: usually under control by parasiotids (Apanteles).
Cultural control: none recommended.
Chemical control: none recommended. Insecticides will destroy the biological control.