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This parasitic wasp is a member of the family Eurytomidae and has a catholic taste in the UK feeding on the larvae of the Cynipidae gall wasps such as; Andricus albopunctatus agamic, A. callidoma agamic, A. corruptrix agamic, A. curvator sexual, A. grossulariae agamic and sexual, A. inflater agamic, A. kollari agamic, A. lignicola agamic, A. quercuscalicis agamic, A. solitarius agamic, A. testaceipes agamic, Aphelonyx cerricola agamic, Biorhiza pallida sexual, Callirhytis erythrocephala sexual, Cynips disticha agamic, C. divisa agamic, C. longiventris agamic, C. quercusfolii agamic, Neuroterus albipes sexual, N. anthracinus (=anthracina) agamic, N. numismalis sexual, N. quercusbaccarum agamic and sexual and N. tricolor sexual. The flight times are february through to september.
The female wasp measures 1.4-3.4mm, averaging 2.8mm
The head is black and granular with white hairs and red brown eyes with red ocelli. The grey brown antennae are elbowed with short hairs. They consist of one ring and 5 funicular segments, which are quite heavy, short and taper slightly.
The thorax is black and coarsley punctate with short white angled hairs. It has deep and complete notaulices and the tegulae are black. The wings are clear and have mid to pale grey brown hairs and dark brown, deep pigmented veins, with short stigmal and post marginal veins. The stigma is well developed and has no dark shadows. The legs are black/brown, hairy and have contrasting joints and have 5 pale tarsel segments.
The gaster (abdomen) is black and shiney and very much like Synergus gaster in shape and appearance, there is a single main segment which is glossy and clearly punctate. The ovipositor sheaths are beneath the gaster, largely hidden in the last segment.
The male is smaller at 1.5-2.9mm averaging out at 1.9mm.
The head is black and coarsely reticulate-punctate with short white hairs all over. The eyes are moderatly sized and bright red and the ocelli are also red. Distinctive knobbly black antennae, consisting of one ring and 5 funicular segments and halos of long white hair.
The thorax is black, coarsly punctate and hairy. The notaulices are deep and complete. The tegulae are black and the wings are clear, although there may be some oily colouration, with mid brown hair and strong mid brown veins. The stigma is well developed. The legs are black and hairy with contrasting joints and 5 tarsel segments.
The gaster is black, very short and quadrate, thin from above. It is joined to the thorax low down by a long and slender petiole.
More detailed descriptions and identification keys are available from Robin Williams at the British Plant Gall Society.
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