I looked through your egg photos and saw nothing that looked like my discovery. I know you are swamped so I’ll be patient. I found this "egg" on an oak (possibly Chestnut) leaf in East Central Indiana on July 25, 2007. The colors are beautiful and staturated with the little spikes surrounding the sphere. Hoping for a finding. Thank you,
Christie Coffey

Hi Christie,
This is not an egg but rather some type of Gall. We do not know enough about botany to be able to identify what tree your Gall is on, but that would be a great assistance. It is not the usual oak leaf we can identify, but there are many different species of oaks. Just assuming it is an oak, our Field Book of Insects written by Lutz and revised in 1948 states: “Oak. — More than three hundred different galls have been listed.” The University of Kentucky department of Entomology website states on its Common Oak Galls page: “Galls are irregular plant growths which are stimulated by the reaction between plant hormones and powerful growth regulating chemicals produced by some insects or mites. Galls may occur on leaves, bark, flowers, buds, acorns, or roots. Leaf and twig galls are most noticeable. The inhabitant gains its nutrients from the inner gall tissue. Galls also provide some protection from natural enemies and insecticide sprays. Important details of the life cycles of many gall-makers are not known so specific recommendations to time control measures most effectively are not available. ” Interestingly, The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction, which is celebrating its 60th Anniversary this year, is in Indiana. The Institute is named for Alfred Kinsey, who shocked the world when his best seller, Sexual Behavior in the Human Male was published in 1948. Kinsey’s attention to detail regarding research can be traced to his earlier, though far less provocative, studies on Gall Wasps. We would like to believe that your gall has been produced by one of the Gall Wasps in the family Cynipidae that so fascinated Alfred Kinsey. We cannot find an exact match to your Gall on BugGuide.

One Response to Unknown Gall: Perhaps a species of Oak Gall Wasp

  1. This gall is caused by an Acraspis species–I don’t know which one offhand. There are several examples on BugGuide. The leaf is definitely oak, but I don’t know if it’s chestnut oak or chinquapin oak or something else.

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