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Genus Alaptus

Another Tiny Wasp - Alaptus Another Tiny Wasp - Alaptus unknown mymarid - Alaptus eriococci Mymarid female, dorsal - Alaptus eriococci - female Mymarid female, dorsal close - Alaptus eriococci - female Mymarid female, anterior close-up - Alaptus eriococci - female Mymarid female, right fore wing, dorsal - Alaptus eriococci - female Hymenoptera - Alaptus
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon ("Parasitica" (parasitoid Apocrita))
Superfamily Chalcidoidea (Chalcidoid Wasps)
Family Mymaridae (Fairyflies)
Genus Alaptus
Explanation of Names
Alaptus Westwood 1839
The Universal Chalcidoidea Database(1) records 42 species of Alaptus worldwide, of which the following 10 are in our area: eriococci, fusculus, globosicornis, huberi, iceryae, immaturus, klonx, minimus, pallidicornis, and santetrapsi.
"Some members of this genus are the smallest known insects, being less than 200 microns in overall body length." (2)
A member of the Alaptus group of genera may be identified by anterior scutellum being separated from the posterior scutellum by a transverse suture that divides the scutellum into two completely separate sclerites(3). Given this, having a 1-segmented clava, and fore wing hind margin having a distinct recurved notch behind the venation and thereafter going almost straight to apex keys it to Alaptus in the same reference.
The Alaptus species key to females in Triapitsyn 2017(4) includes all 10 species in our area presently recorded in the Universal Chalcidoidea Database(1).
Larvae are egg parasitoids, often of barklouse (Psocodea)(2), but Hemiptera(1) hosts are common. Lepidoptera and Coleoptera hosts are reported for one species each in our area(1).
Works Cited
1.Universal Chalcidoidea Database
2.Catalog of Hymenoptera in America North of Mexico
Karl V. Krombein, Paul D. Hurd, Jr., David R. Smith, and B. D. Burks. 1979. Smithsonian Institution Press.
3.The genus Dicopomorpha (Hymenoptera, Mymaridae) in Africa and a key to Alaptus-group genera
John Huber. 2009. ZooKeys, Vol. 20, pp. 233–244.
4.Revision of Alaptus (Hymenoptera: Mymaridae) in the Holarctic region, with taxonomic notes on some extralimital species
S. V. Triapitsyn. 2017. Zootaxa, Vol. 4279, No.1, pp. 1–92.