Chalcid Wasp

Subject: TINY BEE?
Location: Fannie, Ark.
October 24, 2014 5:46 pm
This little bee (when I say little I mean smaller than the head of a pin) appeared in a photograph I took of another insect (Bluet). I literally could not see it until I had cropped the picture. It was on a Sicklepod Senna leaf. I didn’t think bees could get this tiny!
Signature: Bill

Chalcid Wasp
Chalcid Wasp

Dear Bill,
This is not a Bee, but rather a parasitic wasp in the family Chalcididae.  We believe we have identified it as
Conura amoena, and according to BugGuide:  “hosts: hairstreak butterflies (Theclinae).”  Most parasitic wasps prey upon the immature stages of insects, and we are guessing that this Chalcid Wasp was searching for caterpillars, though of the genus BugGuide notes:  “most attack Lepidoptera pupae; a few parasitize Coleoptera (Chrysomelidae, Curculionidae) and Diptera (Syrphidae); some are secondary parasites of Ichneumonidae and Braconidae.”

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