Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Upcoming Events

National Moth Week photos of insects and people. Here's how to add your images.

Photos of insects and people from the 2019 BugGuide Gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa

parasitic wasp?

parasitic wasp?
Sitka County, Alaska, USA
July 29, 2014
Size: ~3mm
More than 25 of these were in the container with the presumed egg case. I have not seen anything else emerge, but perhaps these are just quicker than whatever laid the eggs? I'm also curious because it seems like it would be very difficult for one of these wasps to access the eggs to parasitize them, given how dense the case was.

Images of this individual: tag all
Spider egg case? parasitic wasp?

Moved from ID Request.

The wasp larvae sometimes develop in a cocoon "ball" such as this, which may contain multiple cocoons.

See reference here.

That's very interesting. I wonder if there's any way to tell what they had parasitized. Also, is there any possibility of further refining of the identification with additional photos? I still have them (though they seem to have all died overnight) and would be happy to try. Regardless, I'll put them in alcohol to be sent to the University collection here in Alaska at some point.

It might be a requirement that you would need to know the host at least to family in order to submit your specimens for identification to the USDA's Systematic Entomology Lab in Washington. That had been the policy there for parasitic Hymenoptera when I was working there, but I don't know if it still is. As for getting a generic ID from additional photos, I would say that the chances aren't good because the few times in which I have forwarded BugGuide photos to the authority on Microgastrinae, I have never gotten a response. In general, I have found European and Canadian specialists to be more interested in public outreach than American ones. I think most, if not all, microgastrines parasitize caterpillars of Lepidoptera, but I suppose a species ID would be necessary for narrowing prospective hosts further.

Comment viewing options
Select your preferred way to display the comments and click 'Save settings' to activate your changes.