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#1 Print Post
Posted on 02-12-2006 18:21

Posts: 3
Joined: 02.12.06


I have a question about tachinids.
I'm working on a project about earwigs and I noticed parasitism by tachinid flies. Is it possible that they DONT kill heir host? I found pupae in a sealed box with earwigs... alive!
I observed parasitsm before but with a death earwig. I waited untill the fly became adult to identify it, it appeared to be "Ocytata pallipes".
I dont know yet which species will be responsible for NOT killing the earwigs. But is it possible? any experiences?

#2 Print Post
Posted on 02-12-2006 19:38
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Location: Reading, England
Posts: 7699
Joined: 12.07.04

Parasitoids, by definition should kill their hosts - it seperates them from normal 'parasites' Smile However, with your Ocytata, I think the chances are the fly killed one but it just so happens that other (unparasitised) earwigs have come into the same space to live.
#3 Print Post
Posted on 02-12-2006 23:43

Posts: 3
Joined: 02.12.06

Well I have a little box containing 1 earwig, suddenly there is a pupae inside and the earwig is still alive...
#4 Print Post
Posted on 03-12-2006 23:35

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Joined: 02.12.06

Never mind I found the solution!
It is possible that an earwig survives for several months after emergence of the tachinid. But eventually dies and can't repoduce. (In laboratory)
#5 Print Post
Posted on 08-12-2006 19:17
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Location: Reading, England
Posts: 7699
Joined: 12.07.04

That's true - the host can sometimes survive having half it's body eaten and the rupture in the body wall caused when the parasitoid emerges. However, the parasitoid would have been developing by eating the host's organs starting at parts that it can live without - namely the developing reproductive organs and fat-bodies etc. Smile
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