Saturday, 10 December 2011

Charitopes carri (Roman),

This Cryptine ichneumon was one of six which were observed exploring the bark crevices on a Sycamore trunk during the last weekend of October.
The specimen was sent to Klaus Horstmann who kindly identified it for me.
The hosts are apparently lacewing larvae.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Pholetesor circumscriptus

This microgastrine braconid is the thelytokous Pholetesor circumscriptus (Nees) was found, on 23rd September 2011, patrolling around Horse-chestnut leaves that were infested with Cameraria ohridella mines.

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Pauesia infulata

I was puzzled when this ichneumon appeared inside a bag containing a Horse-chestnut leaf. I was hoping for a Colastes braconius (parasitoid of Cameraria ohridella) but knew immediately that the wing venation here was too simple. I emailed the image to Andrew Polaszek who suggested that this was in fact an aphidiine braconid i.e. a primary parasitoid of aphids. This group has very reduced wing venation in general, with fusion of the "ground plan" cells. Bill Ely examined the specimen and identified it as one of the Pauesia genus, probably Pauesia infulata.

Friday, 17 June 2011


This Ctenopelmatine was found at Timble Ings, VC64, on 11/6/2011.

I understand that they are usually parasitoids of saw-fly larvae and this one was flying over bilberry.


This little ichneumon, from Timble Ings on 11/6/2011, is a male Cryptine from the tribe Hemigastrini.

It is awaiting specific identification.

Glypta extincta

When I visited Timble Ings, VC64, on 11th June 2011 I found a couple of these branchine ichneumons flying around the bilberry.

Bill Ely tells me that it is Glypta (Conoblasta) extincta.

A Common Lizard, basking on a dry stone wall, was another highlight of this Saturday morning excursion.

Isadelphus inimicus

This male ichneumon was found seasching the bark of a Sycamore tree at Hollins Hall, Baildon VC64, on 11th June 2011.

Bill Ely tells me that it seems to be Isadelphus inimicus but it has black mandibles rather than yellow.

Male ichneumons are less easy to identify than females and this could be one of the other Isadelphus species.

Megastylus suecicus

An ichneumon found in my Baildon garden on 9th June 2011 was sent to Bill Ely who tells me that it belongs to the subfamily Orthocentrinae and the tribe Helictini and to the genus Megastylus.

Bill says that he has used a draft key and the specimen runs to Megastylus suecicus.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Scirtetes robustus

A Dun-bar moth larva (Cosmia trapezina), found in woodland at Hawksworth, appears to have been the host of the ichneumon Scirtetes robustus.
This is one of the Campopleginae and used to be called Spudastica kriechbaumeri.
It is a common parasitoid of several Orthosia spp. and this pupa should hopefully hatch next Spring.

Ascogaster grahami

When a parasitoid emerged from one of my Luffia ferchaultella cases collected from Hollins Hall Hotel, Baildon VC64, I was initially assuming it was going to be another Diadegma.
This one is a smaller insect and Mark Shaw tells me that it is the Braconid, Ascogaster grahami.
It is not a rare species and usually parasitises tineids rather than Psychidae.

Clistopyga incitator (Fabricius)

After visiting Jerrison Wood in Esholt VC64, I found this insect flying around inside my car.

Bill Ely (YNU Parasitica Recorder) and Mark Shaw identified it for me as Clistopyga incitator, a parasitoid of spider nests - Segestria etc.

Bill tells me that this Pimpline ichneumon is a new record for grid square SE14.

Campoplex sp.

In April 2011 I collected some old teasel heads from the Knaresborough by-pass with the intention of rearing the moth Endothenia gentianaeana. Most of the teasels did in fact house a larva.

This parasitoid wasp appeared in the container on 28/4/11

Unfortunately it was damaged en route to Mark Shaw and the exact species was unable to be determined.

Campoplex is a very large genus.

Diadegma narcyiae (Horstmann)

In the Spring of 2011 I discovered a colony of the moth Narycia duplicella on an ancient Oak tree close to Bolton Abbey in North Yorkshire VC64.
Two parasitoids emerged from the lichen-feeding larvae (4/4/11 & 8/5/11).
Mark Shaw kindly identified the parasitoids as Diadegma sp. (Ichneumonidae: Campopleginae).
Klaus Horstmann has described Diadegma narcyiae from an example in the Netherlands in 2008. There is already a suspected British specimen (Hampshire) but it is a male and so very uncertain.
My two Wharfedale specimens (also both male) are now also with Horstmann and, hopefully will be positively identified soon.

In 2012, Klaus Horstmann corrected the original incorrect spelling to Diadegma naryciae (justified emendation).

Adelius sp.

This tiny Adelius sp. emerged on 23/5/2010 from a Cowberry leaf that had been mined by an Ectoedmia weaveri larva. The Cowberry was found on Barden Moor VC64, on the east bank of Lower Barden Reservoir.

The Adeliinae are part of the Braconidae and are specialist parasitoids of Nepticulids.

Mark Shaw tells me that this is a very unrevised group - probably a great many, more or less specialised species, with only a few names in use and perhaps none of them reliably.

Cotesia hyphantriae (Riley)

This parasitoid emerged on 30/4/2010 from a cocoon found alongside a dead caterpillar in my Baildon garden.

I recognised the caterpillar as being that of Noctua fimbriata which I knew to have bred in the garden in 2009.

Mark Shaw identified the parasitoid as Cotesia hyphantriae (Riley) - quite an isolated species in its genus (part of the former "Apantales") that is known to overwinter in low-feeding noctuids.