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of the Afrotropical region

(Life: Kingdom: Metazoa (animals); Phylum: Arthropoda; Class: Hexapoda; Order: Hymenoptera;  Superfamily: Ichneumonoidea; Family: Braconidae)



Alloplitis Nixon, 1965

Apanteles Förster,1862
Beyarslania Koçak & Kemal, 2009
Buluka de Saeger,1948
Carlmuesebeckius Fernandez-Triana, 2018
Choeras Mason, 1981
Cotesia Cameron,1891
  Deuterixys  Mason,1981
Diolcogaster Ashmead,1900

Distatrix Mason,1981

Dodogaster Rousse 2013

Dolichogenidea Viereck,1911

Exoryza Mason, 1981

Exulonyx Mason,1981


Fornicia Brullé,1846

Glyptapanteles Asmead, 1904


Hypomicrogaster Ashmead,1898

  Iconella Mason, 1981
Illidops Mason, 1981
Jenopappius Fernandez-Triana, 2018
Keylimepie Fernandez-Triana, 2016

Microgaster Latreille,1804

Microplitis Förster,1862
  Miropotes Nixon, 1965
Nyereria Mason, 1981
Ohenri Fernandez-Triana, 2018
Parapanteles Ashmead,1900
Philoplitis Nixon,1965
  Promicrogaster Brues & Richardson, 1913
  Protapanteles Ashmead,1898 (Nearctic, Oriental, Palaearctic regions)
  Protomicroplitis Ashmead, 1898 (Neotropical region)
  Rasivalva Mason, 1981
  Sathon Mason, 1981
Semionis Nixon, 1965
Silvaspinosus Fernandez-Triana, 2018
Venanides Mason, 1981
Wilkinsonellus Mason, 1981
Ypsilonigaster Fernandez-Triana, 2018

Observations and above photographs recorded by Desiré Pelser of Earth & Oceans (April 2020): "Every few years in Autumn, an explosion of Rhenea michii caterpillars decimates a Cape Ash (Ekebergia capensis) in our front garden in Kloof, Kwazulu-Natal (South Africa). It's a very strange experience standing under the tree: above you, the audible clicks and rustles as hordes of caterpillars munch away; beneath your feet, thick layers of frass like coarse black sand. The tree is quickly stripped bare, and just as quickly bursts back into new life with the first rays of spring.
Caterpillars often fall from the tree - small, early instar caterpillars less than a centimeter long; large, voluptuous 6cm caterpillars ready to start their metamorphosis into beautiful moths.
Yesterday, I noticed two small (12mm) fallen caterpillars under the tree, very still and hanging onto a dried Dietes stalk. Near them on the stalk were two white parasitic wasp cocoons, and crawling near those were what looked like two very tiny (2mm) worms. I have often seen parasitised caterpillars, but never the wasp larvae as they emerge from the unlucky caterpillar and before they spin their cocoons!
The scene I managed to capture with the help of my macro lens probably took about 3 minutes or so - and was fascinating to watch. The caterpillar, still alive, suddenly jerked back and forth and then a wasp larva slowly emerged. The larva worked its way out of the caterpillar's body by moving back and forth. About half way through, the larva, which seemed exhausted, moved its head (?) under the caterpillar's foot and rubbed itself back and forth. The caterpillar suddenly jerked again and the larva popped out, already spinning its cocoon. Amazing!"


Solitary or gregararious endoparasitoids (koinobiont) of Lepidoptera larvae.


Currently 81 genera and 2999 extant species are recognized as valid, including 36 nominal species that are currently considered as species inquirendae (Fernandez-Triana et al., 2020).




Ahmad, Z., Pandey, K., Haider, A.A. and Shuja-Uddin 2005. Discovery of the genus Wilkinsonellus Mason (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) from India. Zoos' Print Journal, 20, 1804.

Annecke, D.P., Moran, V.C. & Watmough, R. 1992. Potato tuber moth: biological control and economic benefit. Plant Protection News, 29, 8.

Appert, J., Betbeder-Matibet, M. & Ranaivosoa, H. 1969. Vingt années de lutte biologique ŕ Madagascar. Agronomie Tropicale, 24, 555–572.

Ashmead, W.H. 1900. Notes on some New Zealand and Australian parasitic Hymenoptera with description of new genera and new species. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, 25, 327–360.

Ashmead, W.H. 1904. A list of Hymenoptera of the Philippine Islands with descriptions of new species. Journal of the New York Entomological Society, 12, 1–22.

Aubert, J.F. 1966. Liste d'identification No.7 (Présentée par le Service d'Identification des Entomophages). Entomophaga, 11, 135–151.

Austin, A.D. & Dangerfield, P.C. 1992. Synopsis of Australian Microgasterinae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), with a key to genera and a description of new taxa. Invertebrate Taxonomy 6:1-76. http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/IT9920001

Bartlett, B.R., Clausen, C.P., DeBach, P., Goeden, R.D., Legner, E.F., McMurtry, J.A. & Oatman, E.R. 1978. Introduced parasites and predators of arthropod pests and weeds: A world review. Agricultural Research Service. United States Department of Agriculture. Agriculture Handbook, 480, 1–545.

Broad, G. & Shaw, M.R. 2009. Checklist of British and Irish Braconidae (Hymenoptera) http://www.nhm.ac.uk/resources-rx/ files/ichneumonidae-checklist-for-web-27752.pdf

Blanchard, E.E. 1947. Descripciones y anotaciones de Microgastrinos argentinos (Hymenoptera). Arthropoda, 1, 6–22.

Cameron, P. 1891. Hymenopterological notices. I. On some Hymenoptera parasitic in Indian injurious insects. Memoirs and Proceedings of the Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society, 4, 182–194.

Cameron, P. 1906. On the Hymenopterous parasites of the mealie stalk borer (Sesamia fusca, Hampson). Transactions of the South African Philosophical Society, 16, 334–336. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21560382.1905.9526068

Cameron, P. 1911. On a collection of parasitic Hymenoptera (chiefly bred) made by Mr. W.W. Froggatt, F.L.S., in New SouthWales, with descriptions of new genera and species. Part 1. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, 36,333–346.

De Saeger, H. 1944. Microgasterinae (Hymenoptera Apocrita). Fam. Braconidae. Exploration du Parc National Albert.Mission G.F. de Witte 1933–1935), 47, 1–342.

Fiaboe KMK, Fernández-Triana JL, Nyamu FW, Agbodzavu KM. 2017. Cotesia icipe sp. n., a new Microgastrinae wasp (Hymenoptera, Braconidae) of importance in the biological control of Lepidopteran pests in Africa. Journal of Hymenoptera Research 61: 49-64. https://doi.org/10.3897/jhr.61.21015

Fernández-Triana, J.L. 2010. Eight new species and an annotated checklist of Microgastrinae (Hymenoptera, Braconidae) from Canada and Alaska. Zookeys, 63, 1–53. http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.63.565

Fernandez-Triana J. 2015. A revision of the genus Protomicroplitis Ashmead (Hymenoptera, Braconidae, Microgastrinae), with the description of a new species. Zootaxa 4039(4): 529–542. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4039.4.3

Fernandez-Triana, J & Boudreault, C. 2016. Keylimepie peckorum gen. n. and sp. n., (Hymenoptera, Braconidae) from southern Florida, U.S., the first known brachypterous member of the subfamily Microgastrinae. ZooKeys 58: 95-107.


Fernandez-Triana, J & van Achterberg, C. 2017. Order Hymenoptera, family Braconidae Subfamily Microgastrinae from the Arabian Peninsula. Arthropod fauna of the UAE 6: 275–321.

Fernández-Triana, J.L., Ward, D.F. and Whitfield, J.B. 2011. Kiwigaster gen. nov. (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) from NewZealand: the first Microgastrinae with sexual dimorphism in number of antennal segments. Zootaxa, 2932, 24–32.

Fernandez-Triana JL, Whitfield JB, Smith MA, Dapkey T, Hallwachs W, Janzen DH 2016. Review of the world species of Exoryza (Hymenoptera, Braconidae, Microgastrinae), with description of five new species. Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift 63(2): 195-210. doi: 10.3897/dez.63.8977

Fernandez-Triana J, Beaudin M, van Achterberg K, Agbodzavu MK, Othim STO, Nyamu FW, Fiaboe KKM. 2017. DNA barcodes, expanded distribution, and redescription of Apanteles hemara Nixon, 1965 (Hymenoptera, Braconidae, Microgastrinae), a potential biocontrol species against amaranth leaf-webbers in Africa. Journal of Hymenoptera Research 58: 1–15.


Fernandez-Triana, J & Boudreault, C. 2018. Seventeen new genera of microgastrine parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera, Braconidae) from tropical areas of the world. Journal of Hymenoptera Research 64: 25-140. http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/jhr.64.25453

Fernandez-Triana J, Shaw MR, Boudreault C, Beaudin M, Broad GR 2020. Annotated and illustrated world checklist of Microgastrinae parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera, Braconidae). ZooKeys 920: 1-1089. https://doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.920.39128

Förster, A. 1862. Synopsis der Familien und Gattungen der Braconiden. Verhandlungen des Naturhistorischen Vereins der Preussischen Rheinlande und Westfalens, 19, 225–288.Giard, A. 1902) Sur un moyen de lutte contre les insectes nuisibles ŕ habitat trčs étendu. Bulletin d'Agriculture Coloniale, 1,21–23.

Granger, C. 1949. Braconides de Madagascar. Académie Malgache, Antananarivo, Madagascar, 428 pp.

Haliday, A.H. 1834. Essay on parasitic Hymenoptera. Entomological Magazine, 2, 225–259.

Kfir, R., Overholt, W.A., Khan, Z.R. & Polaszek, A. 2002. Biology and management of economically important lepidopteran cereal stem borers in Africa. Annual Review of Entomology, 47, 701–731.

Kurdjumov, N.V. 1912. Hyménoptčres-parasites nouveaux ou peu connus. Revue Russe d'Entomologie, 12, 223–240.

Long, K.D. & van Achterberg, C. 2003. Two new species of the genus Wilkinsonellus Mason (Hymenoptera: Braconidae:Microgastrinae) from northern Vietnam. Zoologische Mededelingen Leiden, 77, 221–227.

Martiré, D. & Rochat, J. 2008. Les papillons de La Réunion et leurs chenilles. Biotope, Mčze (collection Parthénope) Muséum d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France, 496 pp.

Mason, W.R.M.. 1981. The polyphyletic nature of Apanteles Foerster (Hymenoptera: Braconidae): A phylogeny and reclassification of Microgastrinae. Memoirs of the Entomological Society of Canada. No. 115. 147pp.

Nixon, G.E.J.. 1965. A reclassification of the tribe Microgasterini (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History), Entomology series. Supplement 2:1-284.

Nixon, G.E.J. 1976. A revision of the north-western European species of the merula, laeteus, vipio, ultor, ater, butalidis,popularis, carbonarius and validus-groups of Apanteles Förster (Hym.: Braconidae). Bulletin of Entomological Research,65, 687–732.


Olliff, A.S. 1893. Report on a visit to the Clarence River District for the purpose of ascertaining the nature and extent of insectravages in the sugar-cane crop. Agricultural Gazette of New South Wales, 4, 373–386.

Ranjith AP, Fernandez-Triana J, Veena T, Priyadarsanan DR, Nasser M 2019. Four new species of Philoplitis Nixon (Braconidae, Microgastrinae) with an updated key and illustrations of all described species. ZooKeys 841: 125-150. https://doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.841.33549

Rao, V.P., Ghani, M.A., Sankaran, T. & Mathur, K.C. 1971. A review of the biological control of insects and other pests inSoutheast Asia and the Pacific Region. Commonwealth Institute of Biological Control. Technical Communication, 6,1–149.

Rincon, C., Bordat, D., Löhr, B. & Dupas, S. 2006. Reproductive isolation and differentiation between five populations ofCotesia plutellae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), parasitoid of Plutella xylostella (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae). BiologicalControl, 36, 171–182. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocontrol.2005.07.018

Risbec, J. 1951. Les Microgasterinae de l'Afrique occidentale francaise. Memoires de l'Institut Francais d'Afrique Noire, 13,411–473.

Rousse, P. & Gupta A. 2013. Microgastrinae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) of Reunion Island: a catalogue of the local species, including 18 new taxa and a key to species. Zootaxa 3616 (6): 501–547. http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.3616.6.1

Saeed, A., Austin, A.D. & Dangerfield, P.C. 1999. Systematics and host relationships of Australasian Diolcogaster (Hymenoptera: Braconidae: Microgastrinae). Invertebrate Taxonomy, 13, 117–178. http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/IT97033

Sankaran, T. 1974. Natural enemies introduced in recent years for biological control of agricultural pests in India. Indian Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 44, 425–433.

Shaw, M.R. 2003. Revised synonymy in the genus Cotesia (Hymenoptera: Braconidae: Microgastrinae): The identity of Microgaster vestalis Haliday, 1834, as a senior synonym of Apanteles plutellae Kurdjumov, 1912. Entomologist's Gazette, 54, 187–189.

Shenefelt, R.D. 1972. Braconidae 4. Microgasterinae Apanteles. Hymenopterorum Catalogus, Pars 7:429-668.

Shenefelt, R.D. 1973. Braconidae 5. Microgasterinae amd Ichneutinae. Hymenopterum Catalogus, Pars 9:669-812.

Song, D.B. & Chen, J.H. 2003. A study of the genus Exoryza Mason from China with description of one new species(Hymenoptera: Braconidae: Microgastrinae). Journal of Shangai Jiaotong University (Agricultural Science), 21, 286–288.

Szépligeti, G. 1914. Insectes Hyménoptčres. IV. Braconidae. In C. Alluaud and R. Jeannel (Eds), Voyage de Ch. Alluaud et R.Jeannel en Afrique orientale 1911–1912. Résultats scientifiques. Librairie Albert Schultz, Paris, France, pp. 168–198.

Valerio, A.A., Deans, A.R. & Whitfield, J.B. 2004. Review of the microgastrine braconid wasp genus Exoryza, withdescription of a new species, E. monocavus, from Central America. Zootaxa, 526, 1–11.

Valerio, A.A., Whitfield, J.B. & Janzen, D.H. 2009. Review of world Parapanteles Ashmead (Hymenoptera: Braconidae:Microgastrinae), with description of fourteen new Neotropical species and the first description of the final instar larvae. Zootaxa, 2084, 1–49.

Van Achterberg, C. 2002. Western Palaearctic genera of the subfamily Microgastrinae: A re-appraisal of the generic and tribaldivision (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). In G. Melika and C. Thuróczy (Eds), Parasitic wasps: Evolution, systematics,biodiversity and biological control. Agroinform, Budapest, Hungary, pp. 19–35.

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Photographs © Pascal Rousse, or © Desiré Pelser, or

Photographs © Jose L Fernandez-Triana (Canadian National Collection of Insects, Ottawa, Canada).

Map illustration © Simon van Noort (Iziko Museums of South Africa).

Web author Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)


Citation: van Noort, S. 2024. WaspWeb: Hymenoptera of the World. URL: www.waspweb.org (accessed on <day/month/year>).

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