Parasitica

ichneumons, chalcids, cynipids etc

PARASITICA is a large but little-studied and often still only partly-understood sub-order. Some of the problem lies in the extremely fragmented, and often incomplete, set of keys that are available. The Royal Entomological Society (RES) has a number of handbooks for ICHNEUMOIDEA but these do not cover all the genera, which makes it particularly difficult. The majority of these handbooks are hard to follow, with obscure terminology and difficult-to-understand diagrams. However, this means it is a most rewarding and interesting group to study, without hosts of other people involved and all the basic groundwork already fully understood - in other words a thorough-going challenge. The good news is that the Natural History Museum, through one of its staff, Gavin Broad, has developed, and continues the development of, a set of keys to sub-families which will at least take the process one step further and open up opportunities to others. The old handbooks are available on the RES site for dowloading free.

Two other groups may be seen as particularly worthy of study here, because of their connections and comparative ease of collection - parts of Cynipoidea & Chalcidoidea.

CYNIPIDAE contains the majority of the causers of the 75 galls found on British oaks. Many galls are readily raised, so the causers may be identified with certainty. Others in the family are inquilines that feed in the same galls but do not feed on, or set out to cause damage to, the causers. Other cynipids are causers and inquilines of various galls on Rosae. My own 2 volume book, 'Oak-galls in Britain', is an in-depth study of these galls and their inhabitants. See Vanellus books.

The British Plant Gall Society (BPGS) has undertaken a long-term study into the inhabitants of the Rose bedeguar (13, including causer, inquiline & parasitoids).

Keys to these are available from the society and everyone is welcome to join in the rearing and recognition programme. (BPGS website)

Among these, CHALCIDS are commonly found parasitising many gall causers and inquilines, as well as each other. They are fascinating creatures in their own right, often metallic & beautifully coloured, ranging from 1mm to over 12mm in length, though the majority are small. Keys for various families are available, but are never particularly easy. However, the effort is worthwhile.


SUB-ORDER APOCRITA

 

PARASITICA – Ichneumons & Parasitic wasps

 

SUPER FAMILY / Family

TRIGONALYOIDEA

Trigonalyidae - complicated life history; parasitic on Symphyta and Lepidoptera caterpillars which swallow the eggs of the parasite (picture not available)

 _______________________________________________________

EVANOIDEA

Evaniidae – parasitoids in cockroaches

 _______________________________________________________

 Aulacidae – parasitoids of wood-boring Hymenoptera or Coleoptera

_______________________________________________________ 

Gasteruptiidae – secondary parasites on food in nest-cells of solitary bees

_______________________________________________________ 

CYNIPOIDEA

Aphelinidae - very small parasitic wasps on the larvae and eggs of a variety of groups   

 _______________________________________________________

 Figitidae – parasitise Diptera or Neuroptera

 _______________________________________________________    

 Eucoilidae – parasitise wide range of Dipteran larvae 

_______________________________________________________ 

Cynipidae – The majority are gall-inducers on oak and rosae, the remainder on a variety of hosts; the rest are inquiline feeders on plant material

See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery. The picture below is of a plant gall covered in cynipid causers.

 _______________________________________________________

Charipidae – secondary parasitoids on braconids or chalcids

_______________________________________________________

CHALCIDOIDEA

Aphelinidae parasitic wasps, mostly on Aphids

_______________________________________________________

Chalcididae – parasitic wasps, mainly on Lepidoptera & Diptera

_______________________________________________________ 

Elasmidae - parasitic wasps on lepidopterous larvae

_______________________________________________________ 

Encyrtidae- parasitic on scale insects, coccids and Arachnidae

 _______________________________________________________

Eulophidae -  wasps parasitic on a wide variety of orders; both external and internal parasitoids of Diptera, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera and Hymenoptera, while some are internal parasitoids of the eggs of these. See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery.

_______________________________________________________ 
Eucharitidae - parasitic wasps on ant larvae

_______________________________________________________

 Eupelmidae - parasitic wasps on a variety of larvae and eggs. See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery.

 _______________________________________________________

Eucoilidae – parasitise wide range of Dipteran larvae

_______________________________________________________ 

Eurytomidae - with extremely diverse host associations, from stem miners to gall formers, parasitoids and others. See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery.

_______________________________________________________

 Figitidae – parasitise Diptera or Neuroptera

_______________________________________________________ 

Ibaliidae – parasitic on Wood-wasp larvae

_______________________________________________________

 Mymaridae – internal parasitoids of insect eggs

_______________________________________________________

 Ormyridae - parasitic on gall-forming insects. See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery.  

_______________________________________________________

 Perilampidae – parasitoids in Diaprionidae, Chrysopidae, Coleoptera & Tenthredinidae

_______________________________________________________ 

Pteromalidae - parasitic wasps on a number of orders. See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery.

_______________________________________________________ 

Tetracampidae - parasitic wasps, mostly on leaf-mining insects

_______________________________________________________ 

Torymidae - parasitic wasps, & some develop in seed endosperm. See Gall insects and Gall insect gallery.

 _______________________________________________________

Trichogrammatidae – parasitoids on eggs of a wide variety of aquatic and terrestrial insects

_______________________________________________________

 PROCTOTRUPOIDEA

Heloridae - parasitic wasps, on larval Chrysopidae

_______________________________________________________

 Proctotrupidae - parasitic wasps, mostly on Coleoptera larvae

_______________________________________________________

 Diapriidae - parasitic wasps, but little known about their biology

_______________________________________________________

Scelionidae - parasitic wasps, on eggs of insects/arthropods

_______________________________________________________

 Platygasteridae - parasitic wasps, mostly on Diptera

_______________________________________________________

 CERAPHRONOIDEA

Megaspilidae - parasitic wasps, on a wide range of hosts

_______________________________________________________

 Ceraphronidae- parasitic wasps, but little known about their biology

_______________________________________________________

 ICHNEUMONOIDEA

Ichneumonidae (Ichneumons) - parasitic or predatory on Lepidoptera & Symphyta, as well as others

 

 

_______________________________________________________

 Braconididae (braconids) parasitic or predatory on Lepidoptera & Symphyta, as well as others

_______________________________________________________

 


Keys to Parasitica


Aculeata


Top - Hymenoptera


Home



Visitors Counter

185731