White Oak gall
Location: Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN
December 16, 2010 10:57 am
I’ve been seeing this gal on white oaks the past couple years in and around Great Smoky Mountains National Park TN. I looked at the picture on your site and didn’t see any that seemed to match. Wold love to have an idea of what kind this is and assume it is a wasp gall?
Signature: Ken Voorhis
Thanks for sending your photos. Galls are growths that can be attributed to many different kinds of insects including wasps and flies as well as to certain mites and other causes that are not related to arthropods. In the case of Gall Wasps in the family Cynipidae, the Gall is a growth on the plant, often the leaf, that provides food for the larval wasp and does not harm the tree. Oak trees are probably the most common host to Galls. There is much diversity in Gall Wasps and we do not have the necessary expertise to classify your particular galls, but you can view some of the genera posted to BugGuide. There is also a section of unidentified Galls available on BugGuide. Alfred Kinsey, who gained notoriety in the 1950s with his studies on human sexuality, was an entomologist who specialized in Gall Wasps prior to turning his attention to the private lives of humans.
Thanks Daniel, If I find anything more I’ll forward it to you.
Ken Voorhis Executive Director
GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS INSTITUTE AT TREMONT
Great Smoky Mountains National Park