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Wattle Apple (gall wasp)

Trichilogaster acaciaelongifoliae


20mm apple-like spherical in singles or clusters on acacia usually longifolia (sallow, golden wattles) - inside the 'fruit' one or more chambers with an egg, larvae or wasp along with an intended food source like another dead arthropod for example.


Almost all of Australia


This plant has become a pest in some parts of the world and the gall wasp has been found to be critical in controlling the plant. It reduces seed production by up to 90%
This species of wattle contains DMT (dimethyltriptamine)

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Hema  Shah
Hema Shah 12 years ago


Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 12 years ago

Many had no apparent holes either!

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 12 years ago

I did a few more (in the name of science ... pic 7)
There was at least one live wasp in every gall. As you can see 1, 2 or 3 chambers. The little wasps seemed quite well developed and could walk and fly.
They seemed to succumb to fresh air or cold after about 30 minutes, slowing their movements considerably. A couple which were put onto a different longifolia were still active an hour later.

MartinL 12 years ago

If you use them all up there's a few thousand here too.
I've posted one dissection here with an exit hole to add to our knowledge, or maybe to our confusion

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 12 years ago

Thanks for the permission to check another one martin as there are only a few thousand left.
Excellent 'other' considerations as well.

MartinL 12 years ago

A winged creature inside there surprises me - but I'm happy to be wrong. You must cut some more in the interests of science. My spotting of a younger clean grub implies they eat only plant tissue and sap. Detritus may then be old pupal casing and frass, with evidence of staining into the gall tissue. We must also consider parasites, and the creature that lays the egg, forming the gall may not be the same creature that emerges.

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 12 years ago

Sorry to say martin... the little wasp was in the opened chamber along with the black detritus of its first meal (guess). Interesting there were 2 chambers but only one wasp. Almost makes me want to check another one.

MartinL 12 years ago

I presume the wasp was nearby and outside of the gall. I have found one similar

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway 12 years ago

interesting how each gall has its own stalk !. Good to hear that these gall wasps are beneficial as pest control.

Mark Ridgway
Spotted by
Mark Ridgway

Victoria, Australia

Spotted on Dec 10, 2011
Submitted on Dec 15, 2011

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