Skip to main content

Friendly Wasp Kills Foes From the Inside Out


Chalcidoid wasp
Chalcidoid wasp

Scientific Name: Halticoptera circulus (Walker), Chrysocharis oscinidis Ashmead

Common Name: Chalcidoid wasp

Friend or Pest (or both): Friend

Region and Diet? These parasitic wasps are native to the Northern Hemisphere and are known to infest and kill leaf- and stem mining flies. The wasps lay eggs inside the developing fly larva and consume them from the inside.

Impact on agriculture? Scientists are researching whether the Chalcicoid wasp can be used to biologically control Allium leafminer, Phytomyza gymnostoma (Diptera: Agromyzidae), an invasive species first detected in the Western Hemisphere in Pennsylvania in December 2015 and has now spread into northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states. It consumes food crops including onions, leeks, garlic, chives, etc., with its feeding damaging leaves and bulbs. Read more on the lab's website