Chalcid Wasps

Chalcid wasps lay eggs in soft butterfly and moth pupae / chrysalises.

Chalcid wasp and a White Peacock butterfly chrysalis

Chalcid wasp and a
White Peacock butterfly chrysalis

Yellow chalcid wasps infect sulphur butterfly chrysalises

Yellow chalcid wasps infect
sulphur butterfly chrysalises

Chalcid wasps emerge from a Gulf Fritillary chrysalis

Chalcid wasps emerge
from a Gulf Fritillary
butterfly chrysalis

465 chalcid wasps emerged from one Black Swallowtail butterfly chrysalis

465 chalcid wasps emerged
from one Black Swallowtail
butterfly chrysalis

Chalcid wasps are tiny. These are next to an American dime.

Chalcid wasps are tiny.
These are next to
an American dime.

Chalcid wasp hole in a Palamedes Swallowtail butterfly chrysalis

Chalcid wasp hole in a
Palamedes Swallowtail
butterfly chrysalis

Chalcid wasps are small insects that lay eggs in soft moth and butterfly chrysalises. Wasp larvae hatch from the eggs. The larvae drink the hemolymph (blood) of the chrysalis. The chrysalis continues to live and mature for quite a few days. The chrysalis dies and the wasp larvae form pupae. When the wasp pupae mature, adult wasps emerge from the pupae and eat a tiny hole in the chrysalis. The wasps, from a few to hundreds, emerge from the chrysalis from the one or two holes they have eaten in the chrysalis.

The wasps immediately begin courtship and pairing and before long, female wasps are ready to lay eggs in fresh butterfly and moth chrysalises/pupae.

To learn more about chalcid wasps and how they infect chrysalises, click on this sentence.

To learn more about Monarch butterflies and chalcid wasps, click on this sentence.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>