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Eucalyptus Gall Wasp

Ophelimus maskelli

Description:

Small pink galls that I originally thought were scales. This Chalcid wasp is invasive.

Habitat:

On several young Eucalyptus in small Eucalyptus grove near Lake Hodges. "This pest, which was first detected in Britain in 2005, is restricted to South East England but it is spreading."

Notes:

First of this genus and species for Bug Guide!

No species ID suggestions

9 Comments

It's a date! Sorry, I just read about the event subject and completely missed the time.

Ava T-B
Ava T-B 4 years ago

The talk starts at 7pm.

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 4 years ago

Hey that's mostly thanks to John anyway! (backing off on the Tanyscelis btw - one new pest is probably enough for a while)

Ava, if I get the day off of work, I'd love to go! I'll know the previous week and will contact you. Thank you for the invite.

John, thank you for the great information. Guess Mark really knows his local gall wasps :)

John La Salle
John La Salle 4 years ago

Hi again Cindy
I've already heard back from a colleague who says yes Ophelimus maskelli is already known in California (indeed quite common all over the campus at UC Riverside).

John La Salle
John La Salle 4 years ago

Hi Cindy.
This certainly looks like Ophelimus maskell - though you really do need adults to be sure (they will be small black wasps - and if you get any you can send them through to me for confirmation).
This species is Australian in origin - and first popped up in the Med Basin a decade or so ago.
It has been spreading since, but I didn't realise that it was in California.
There are a couple of biological control agents which have been introduced into the Med and seem to be quite effective.

Here are links to a couple of pertinent references
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/art...
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007...

Fell free to contact me if you want more information. I'm pretty easy to find through Google. I will pass this on to a couple of Californian colleagues just in case they don't yet know that it has arrived.

Ava T-B
Ava T-B 4 years ago

Cindy, Come to the Horticultural Society meeting the second Monday in March (at the Del Mar OTB facility). The topic is eucalyptus of California and the speaker, Matt Ritter, is really great. You'll be my guest.
http://sdhort.org/event-1775079

Ha! Well we took your plants so we get the critters too! Thanks for the other pest name. I'm curious to see what others say about them being here in Cali.

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 4 years ago

You might also have Tanyscelis spp. scale galls there too. Compare here http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/164... and http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/187...
Sorry about the invasion.

San Diego, California, USA

Lat: 33.06, Long: -117.07

Spotted on Feb 5, 2015
Submitted on Feb 5, 2015

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