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Genus Myzinum

Myzinum - Myzinum carolinianum - female wasp - Myzinum maculatum - female Wasp ID Request - Myzinum quinquecinctum - female Myzinum sp. - my contribution to the generic chaos. - Myzinum - male Pollinator on Dahoon - Myzinum - male Myzinum quinquecinctum ? - Myzinum quinquecinctum - male Myzinum? - Myzinum - male Hymenoptera ID request - Myzinum carolinianum - female
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon (Aculeata - Ants, Bees and Stinging Wasps)
Superfamily Thynnoidea
Family Thynnidae (Thynnid Wasps)
Subfamily Myzininae
Genus Myzinum
Other Common Names
New World banded thynnid wasps
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Myzinum Latreille, 1803
= Myzine [!] Latreille, 1805(1804) - illegal emendation
= Elis Fabricius, 1805
= Plesia Jurine, 1807
= Myzina [!] Rafinesque-Schmaltz, 1815 - illegal emendation
= Gonordula Argaman, 1994
= Cocovasna Argaman, 1994
= Keyovaska Argaman, 1994
= Tokoparta Argaman, 1994
= Fikoplesa Argaman, 1994
= Ekepirka Argaman, 1994
Explanation of Names
Myzinum Latreille, 1803
10 spp. in our area, 63 spp. total(1)
1. Myzinum carolinianum: eastern (FL, GA, IL, IN, IO, KS, KY, MD, MN, NC, ND, NJ, SD, TN, TX, VA)
2. Myzinum cocoritensis: s. AZ; Mexico: Sonora - has not been collected since the 1960s, may be extinct
3. Myzinum confluens: southwestern (AZ, CO, NM; Mexico: Chihuahua, Sonora, Sinaloa)
4. Myzinum dubiosum: southern (AZ, CA, CO, FL, KS, NM, TX, UT; Mexico: Baja California, Guerrero, Sonora)
5. Myzinum frontalis: southwestern (AZ, CA, CO, NM, OK, TX, UT; Mexico: Tamaulipas, Veracruz)
6. Myzinum fulviceps: AZ; Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica
7. Myzinum maculatum: widespread (AL, AZ, CA, CO, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MI, MN, NC, ND, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, TX, UT, VA; Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica)
8. Myzinum navajo: southwestern (AZ, NM, TX; Mexico, El Salvador, Costa Rica)
9. Myzinum obscurum: eastern (DC, DE, FL, GA, IL, KS, KY, MD, MO, MS, NC, NJ, OH, OK, SC, TX, VA)
10. Myzinum quinquecinctum: widespread (Candada: QC; United States: AL, AZ, CO, DC, DE, FL, IL, IO, KS, KY LA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, OH, OK, PA, SC, TX, UT, WI, WV, WY; Mexico; Costa Rica)
8-23 mm ♀, 7–24 mm ♂(1)
Readily distinguished as a genus as no other New World genus of Thynnidae has yellow banding. Key to North American species by Kimsey (2009).(1)

Overview of Females
Females are robust, with short antennae and heavy hind femora ("thighs"). Most species have 5 yellow abdominal bands and lightly bicolored wings.

M. carolinianum - an eastern species with yellow-marked scapes, complete yellow band on the pronotum, unmarked propodeum, orangish legs, lightly bicolored wings, and complete but often narrowed banding on the abdomen (can also be broad and extensive)

-no photo-
Myzinum confluens - a western species distinguished from all other species by having both anterior and posterior bands on the abdomen

Myzinum dubiosum - a southern species with a reddish scape, yellow-marked propodeum, reddish legs, lightly-bicolored wings, and either complete bands or restricted markings on the abdomen

Myzinum frontalis - a western species with extensive yellow on the pronotum and propodeum, uniformly untinted wings, and especially broad yellow banding on the abdomen

-no photo-
Myzinum fulviceps - a western species with orange rather than yellow markings on the body

Myzinum maculatum - a widespread species with black antennae, yellow-marked propodeum, strongly bicolored wings, black or orangish legs, and complete, often broad banding on the abdomen

-no photo-
Myzinum navajo - a western species closely resembling M. carolinianum but distinguished by the corsely-ridged propodeum

Myzinum obscurum - an eastern species with uniformly black antennae, black scutum and scutellum, unmarked propodeum, black legs, infuscated wings, and lateral yellow spots on the abdomen

Myzinum quinquecinctum - a widespread species distinguished by the antennae with yellow-marked scape and uniformly orange flagellum, yellow-marked propodeum, uniformly orange wings, orange legs, and complete banding on the abdomen

Overview of Males
Males are very slender with long, straight antennae and a prominent upcurved pseudostinger at the tip of the abdomen. Most species have 6 yellow abdominal bands and untinted wings except for the apex. Species identification relies heavily upon dissection of terminalia and generally is not reliable from photos alone.

M. carolinianum - examination of genitalia is necessary

Myzinum dubiosum - distinguished by the extensively orange-red legs

Myzinum frontalis - distinguished by the extensively yellow pronotum and propodeum and the uniformly untinted wings

M. maculatum - examination of genitalia is necessary

M. obscurum - examination of genitalia is necessary

M. quinquecinctum - distinguished by the yellow on T7 and the uniformly orangish wings
New World, most diverse in the Neotropics; in our area, e. half of NA + sw. US(1)
Typically meadows, fields, lawns(2)
Jun-Oct in NC
Larvae are parasitoids of white grubs (scarab larvae), especially Phyllophaga(2) and other Scarabaeidae, and to a lesser extent Cicindelinae. Adults take nectar, mostly from Asteraceae and Apiaceae.
Life Cycle
Female lays one egg per grub in soil. Larva hatches, penetrates host, first feeding on non-essential tissues, later feeding on essential organs and killng host. Pupae overwinter in soil; adults emerge in early summer. One generation per year.(2)
Males will often congregate on vegetation to rest in the heat of the afternoon and also when sleeping at night.

The taxonomy of this genus is rather problematic. Males are readily distinguished by terminalia but are often chromatically homogenous. Females are a bit more distinguishable by color but exhibit considerable intraspecific variability in both patterns and sculpturing. Revision of the genus required confirmation of sex associations. Even so, populations of Myzinum in our area remain a mystery. Case in point, Texas has xanthic (extensively yellow) populations that approach the color pattern of M. frontalis but differ in the strongly pigmented wings.

Species are used in turfgrass pest management.
Internet References