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Photo#482442
Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella

Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella
Carpinteria Bluffs, Santa Barbara County, California, USA
December 31, 2010
Size: gall ~8mm in diameter
This is what's left of an old, dried-out stem gall produced by Gnorimoschema baccharisella in coyote brush (Baccharis pilularis). My 13-year-old son plucked it off while we were taking a hike this afternoon. It originally retained its emergence hole, which I thought was kind of interesting, so I was pointing it out to him, when he took his innate curiosity to the next level and broke the gall in half.

There were some interesting ovoid structures inside the gall, which is what I'm really interested in getting some opinions on. According to Russo's Field Guide to Plant Galls of California and Other Western States (p. 236), "The frass that accumulates inside the gall serves as a culture medium for various fungi, which are eaten by several fungus insects after departure of the moth."

See the other images for some views of the inside-the-gall ovoid structures. Do they look like fungi of some sort?

Feel free to frass these images; I realize they may be non-buggish enough to qualify for removal.

Update: After a while I noticed small, pale yellow insect mite (I think?) crawling around inside the gall. I added a (poor quality) image (see thumbnail below); I also uploaded a YouTube video that gives a somewhat clearer view.


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Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella Ovoid nodules inside old Gnorimoschema baccharisella gall - Gnorimoschema baccharisella

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