Insects of Britain and Ireland: the families of Hymenoptera

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L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz


Including Megaspilidae.

Adults minute; (0.5–)1–1.5(–2.8) mm long.

Head. Antennal segments 9–11. Antennae inserted below the eyes; geniculate (with a long scape).

Thorax. Pronotum long, extending back to the tegulae. Cenchri absent. Wings present, or absent. Fore-wings usually with a conspicuous pterostigma; with very reduced venation (but with distinct marginal and stigmal veins); combining greatly reduced venation with a conspicuous, blind-ending stigmal vein. Closed fore-wing cells 0. Submarginal cells 0. Discoidal cells 0. Hind-wings without closed cells. Mid and hind tibiae with two spurs. Hind tibiae without specialised spurs.

Abdomen. The abdomen with a marked basal constriction. The ‘waist’ simple. Ovipositor of females adapted for piercing.

Larvae. Larvae legless or the legs vestigial; parasitic on hosts selected by the mother (on Diptera, or secondary parasites of aphids and coccids, via Braconid or Chalcid primaries).

General comments. Megaspilidae are included here pending acquisition of a definitive description.

British representation. Species in Britain 26 (Ceraphronidae sensu stricto), or 65 (Megaspilidae); Ceraphronidae sensu stricto: Aphanogmus, Ceraphron and Synarsis. Megaspilidae: Conostigmus, Dendrocerus, Lagynodes, Megaspilus and Trichosteresis.

Classification. Suborder Apocrita; Series Parasitica; Superfamily Ceraphronoidea.

Illustrations. • Dendrocerus halidayi (Curtis) (B. Ent. 249). • Dendrocerus halidayi (detail: B. Ent. 249). • Dendrocerus halidayi (dissections: B. Ent. 249). • Dendrocerus halidayi: B. Ent. 249, legend+text. • Dendrocerus halidayi: B. Ent. 249, text cont..

To view the illustrations with detailed captions, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2003 onwards. Insects of Britain and Ireland: the families of Hymenoptera. Version: 16th May 2016.’.