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Egg parasitoid wasp - Telenomus - female Parasitoid - Microctonus pilatus Hemileuca eglanterina parasite Egg parasitoid? Tobacco Hornworm (parasitized) - Manduca sexta Wasp parasitizing a Pococera caterpillar. 9/22/2010 - Phytodietus
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
No Taxon (Glossary)
No Taxon (P)
No Taxon parasitoid
Explanation of Names
From Greek, parasitos parasite, plus eidos form.
parasitoid noun, plural parasitoids - an insect that, in the larval stage, feeds off of the tissues of its host (as does a parasite), but this feeding normally results in death of the host. Thus a parasitoid is in some ways a predator as well. Additional characteristics:
parasitoids found mostly among the Diptera (flies) and Hymenoptera (wasps); some Coleoptera (beetles), a few other groups such as Strepsiptera, Mantispidae (in the neuroptera), perhaps some Lepidoptera
usually smaller than their hosts as adults, but typically close in size
hosts are usually other insects, or at least arthropods--not vertebrates, for instance
parasitic lifestyle occurs only during the larval stage of the parasitoid
parasitoids attack only one stage of the host

Examples of prominent parasitoids:
Ichneumonid and Braconid Wasps (as well as other allies)

Parasitoids can be further divided as follows (Wikipedia--Parasitoid):
Idiobionts prevent further development of the host after initially immobilizing it and usually develop outside the host.
Koinobionts allow the host to continue its development while feeding upon it, and may parasitize any host life stage. These can be subdivided further:
endoparasitoids - develop inside the body of the host
ectoparasitoids - develop outside the host body, though frequently attached or embedded in host tissues

Sometimes a parasitoid is, in turn, attacked by another parasitoid species. This species would be called most properly a secondary parasitoid, or hyperparasitoid, but it is often called simply a hyperparasite.
Print References
Gordh, A Dictionary of Entomology, p. 667 (1)
Borror et al. An Introduction to the Study of Insects (2)
Internet References
Raper, Chris--Parasitic Wasps
Mahr, Dan. The Major Groups of Natural Enemies: Parasitoids, Part I. Biological Control News 5(6) (June 1998).
Pierce, Naomi. Predatory and parasitic lepidoptera: carnivores living on plants. Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society 49(4), 1995, 412-453. (link)
Works Cited
1.A Dictionary of Entomology
George Gordh, David H. Headrick. 2003. CABI Publishing.
2.Borror and DeLong's Introduction to the Study of Insects
Norman F. Johnson, Charles A. Triplehorn. 2004. Brooks Cole.