Parasitoids of the Wild Silk Moths (Saturniidae)

by Kirby L. Wolfe

Electra Braconid Wasp (Cotesia electrae) Viereck 1912 (Apanteles).

Parasitoid: What is a parasitoid? The letters “oid” mean “like” and so it’s an organism like a parasite. It’s actually somewhere between a parasite and a predator. It kills its host like a predator, but it lives in its host first, like a parasite. Most parasitoids are small wasps, but some kinds of flies and even slender hairworms can be parasitoids of saturniid moths.

Below are links to representatives from three different parasitoid families.

Cotesia electrae; the Electra Braconid Wasp,

Eupelmids: Anastatus; tiny species; parasitoids of insect eggs,

Belvosia nigrifrons; Tachinidae fly species

Reference: Richard S. Peigler. Catalog of Parasitoids of Saturniidae of the World. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 33:1-121, 1994.

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