Orchid Dupe Wasp 


Subfamily Phygadeuontinae - Banded Ichneumon Wasps

Order Hymenoptera, Family Ichneumonidae  

This page contains pictures and information about Banded Ichneumon Wasps in subfamily Phygadeuontinae that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
Phygadeuontinae is the largest subfamily in Ichneumon Wasps. Most wasps are small and a few are medium size. Most species look very similar as many of them are black in colour with white markings. Antenna are often with white band and the ovipositor is relatively long. Their young are external parasites of pupae of moths and other insects, some are parasites of spider egg-sac. Males are usually found searching, either walking or dance-flying over low bushes. Females are usually found searching on foot for hosts on ground or on plants. 
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Ichneumon Wasps in subfamily Inchneumoninae can be distinguished with the followings characteristic;
    - on the forewing usually with the pentagon, quadrate shaped areolet or absent,
    - forewing with a single bullae (unpigmented area of vein) in 2m-cu (except tribe Phygadeuontini),
    - hind wing with M+Cu often arched, 
    - clypeus separated from face by groove,
    - ovipositor can be short or long with flexible sheath, never very long,
    - antennae often white banded,

Genus Gotra  - Banded Pupa Parasite Wasps

Gotra is a very large genus. Most of them are conspicuous black with white-stripes. Antenna segment is long and slender. Different species may look very similar. They are usually found searching for host cocoons on bark of trees. 
Banded Pupa Parasite Wasp I
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Gotra sp., Mesostenini. female, body length 15mm
The wasp has white band on the antenna. Its body is black with white dots on thorax and white-banded abdomen. The legs are orange-brown in colours. Please check this page for more information.
Banded Pupa Parasite Wasp II
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Gotra sp. Mesostenini, body length 20mm
This wasp look almost the same as the Banded Pupa parasite Wasp 1 above but with longer legs and ovipositor. Please visit this page for more information and pictures. 
Banded Pupa Parasite Wasp III
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Gotra sp. Mesostenini, body length 20mm
This wasp look almost the same as the Banded Pupa parasite Wasps above but with longer legs and very long ovipositor. Please check this page for more information.

Black and White Ichneumon Wasp
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Anacis sp., Mesostenini, female and male, body length 15mm
We often find them in our backyard, land on the leaves and search for prey to parasite. They target at large cocoons of moths. They lay eggs in the prey body where their larvae live and grow inside. We usually find a pair of female and male searching on the same plant. The about pictures show a female with long ovipositor and a male without it. Click on here for more information and pictures.
Brown-legged Black Ichneumon Wasp
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Xanthocryptus sp., Mesostenini, female, body length 15mm
This wasp is black with reddish-brown legs. From it white-banded antenna, we believed it is in the Phygadeuontinae subfamily but cannot tell the species name. Please check this page for more information.
Black-headed Orange Parasite Wasp
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Stiromesostenus sp. Mesostenini, body length 15mm
We found this wasp in Karawatha Forest on Jan 2011. It was searching on bark on large tree trunk. Please check this page for more infomation. 
Red Ichneumon Wasp
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Paraphylax anax, Phygadeuontini, female, body length 20mm
This wasp is reddish-brown in colours with white patterns. From its white-banded antenna, we believed it is in the Phygadeuontinae subfamily. Please check this page for more infromation. 

1. Insects of Australia, CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University Press, 2nd Edition 1991, pp 943.
2. An introduction to the Ichneumonidae of Australia - Gauld, I.D. 1984, British Museum, p158.
3. Parasitoids: Natural enemies of helicoverpa - Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, Queensland, 2005. 
4. Northern Territory Insects, A Comprehensive Guide CD - Graham Brown, 2009.
5. Wasps - family Ichneumonidae - lifeunseen.com, by Nick Monaghan.
6. What wasp is that? - An interactive identification guide to the Australasian families of Hymenoptera, 2007. 

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Last updated: August 19, 2012.