Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Tobacco Hornworm Control

Check out this great photo taken by Master Gardener Betty Lockwood of the pupal cocoons of a parasitic wasp on the tobacco hornworm. Other hornworms (Sphingidae) are parasitized by these parasitic insects of the order Hymenoptera.

The adult wasp inserts its eggs beneath the skin of the hornworm larva. The eggs hatch and the young wasps feed on the hornworm until they pupate as shown in the photo. This parasite is an important factor in natural control of hornworms. Pretty cool huh!

See this link for youtube below to watch a few parasitic wasps hatch. Youtube

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