Canadian Forest Service Publications

Identification of cocoons of Apanteles and Dolichogenidea (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) species attacking Choristoneura fumiferana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) and associated Microlepidoptera. 2003. Eveleigh, E.S.; Pollock, S.; Goulet, H.; Huber, J.T. The Canadian Entomologist 135: 677-684.

Year: 2003

Issued by: Atlantic Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 23646

Language: English

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We examined the cocoons of six species of the genera Apanteles and Dolichogenidea attacking spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana Clemens, and Microlepidoptera in the same microhabitat in an effort to overcome taxonomic and ecological problems associated with the identification of these species when adults fail to emerge from their cocoons. Neither cocoon length nor width nor ratio of length to width could be used to identify the six species, owing to considerable overlap in these attributes among the species and the effects of the source of the cocoons. Using a simple technique to examine webbing characteristics of the cocoons, however, we found that each species has a unique banding pattern, determined by the manner in which the density of the webbing varies along the length of the cocoon. This pattern can be used to reliably identify each species. We describe and illustrate the webbing characteristics of each species and provide an identification key based on these characteristics.