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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Systematic Entomology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #282620

Title: Hyperparasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera: Trigonalidae) reared from dry forest and rain forest caterpillars of Area de Conservacion, Guanacaste, Costa Rica

item SMITH, D. - Retired ARS Employee
item SMITH, M. - University Of Guelph
item JANZEN, D. - University Of Sciences - Philadelphia
item HALLWACHS, W. - University Of Sciences - Philadelphia

Submitted to: Journal of Hymenoptera Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/19/2012
Publication Date: 10/15/2012
Citation: Smith, D.R., Smith, M.A., Janzen, D.H., Hallwachs, W. 2012. Hyperparasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera: Trigonalidae) reared from dry forest and rain forest caterpillars of Area de Conservacion, Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Journal of Hymenoptera Research. 29:19-144.

Interpretive Summary: Parasitic wasps can be important in controlling populations of economically important plant-feeding insects. However some, called hyperparasites, are parasitic on parasites and are thus unwanted in biological control efforts because they may reduce the populations of beneficial parasites. Little is known of these hyperparasites throughout the world. During extensive rearing of many thousands of moth caterpillars in Costa Rica, both parasites and hyperparasites were obtained. Genetic and morphological evidence supported the recognition of five species of hyperparasites, one of which is new to science. The host data for these hyperparasites are given, and the new species is described and illustrated. This will be of interest to researchers concerned with biological control and those working on plant-feeding insects.

Technical Abstract: Five species of Trigonalidae, hyperparasites of Ichneumonidae (Hymenoptera) and Tachinidae (Diptera) that parasitize caterpillars (Lepidoptera), have been reared during the ongoing caterpillar inventory of Area de Conservación Guanacaste (ACG), Guanacaste Province, northwestern Costa Rica: Lycogaster apicipennis (Cameron), Taeniogonalos woodorum Smith, n. sp., Taeniogonalos fasciatipennis (Cameron), Trigonalys championi Cameron, and Trigonalys maculifrons Sharp. Morphological and DNA barcoding data support species separation of these generalist hyperparasites. Taeniogonalos gundlachii (Cresson) is not a widespread, color-variable species as previously treated and is probably confined to eastern North America. The species previously considered as T. gundlachii in Costa Rica is regarded as Taeniogonalos fasciatipennis, a species found only in ACG dry forest. Taeniogonalos woodorum is a similar species but found only in the rain forest. Habitat and host records are given for these five species of trigonalids.