Megaphragma priesneri

Megaphragma priesneri (Kryger) and Megaphragma mymaripenne Timberlake

Systematic position: Insecta, Holometabola, Hymenoptera, Apocrita, Chalcidoidea, Trichogrammatidae.

Geographical distribution: Central and South America, Hawaii, Mediterranean region.

Morphology: The length of the yellow-brown bodies of both species is about 0.2-0.25 mm and they have large red eyes. Antennae with very long setae on their terminal segments.

Life history: Both species are endoparasitoids of the eggs of Thripidae. Rproduction is normally thelytokous. Development requires 6-8 weeks and these parthenogenetic females live only 1-2 days, M. mymaripenne producing about 25 eggs at 25ºC.

Economic importance: Megaphragma priesneri attacks the eggs of various Thripidae, including Retithrips syriacus on different host plants. In Israel Megaphragma mymaripenne is a very common (50-80%) parasitoid of Heliothrips haemorrhoidalis. However, the ability of these species to reduce pest numbers is unclear.


Bernardo, U. and Viggiani, G. 2003. Biological data on Megaphragma amalphitanum Viggiani and Megaphragma mymaripenne Timberlake (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae), egg-parasitoids of H. haemorrhoidalis (Bouché) (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) in southern Italy. Bollettino di Laboratorio Entomologia Agraria Filippo Silvestri 58: 77–85.

Hessein, N.A. and McMurtry, J.A. 1988. Obeservations on Megaphragma mymaripenne Timberlake (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae), an egg parasite of Heliothrips haemorrhoidalis Bouche (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Pan-Pacific Entomologist 64: 250-254.

Kuslitzky, W. 2003. New variant: Annotated list of hymenopterous parasitoids of thrips in Israel. Phytoparasitica 31: 310.

Swirski, E., Wysoki, M. and Izhar, Y. 2002. Subtropical Fruit Pests in Israel. Fruit Board of Israel, pp. 283+III (in Hebrew with an English Preface).

Viggiani, U. and Bernardo, U. 1998. Two species of Megaphragma (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae), egg-parasitoids of H. haemorrhoidalis Bouche (Thysanoptera) in southern Italy, with description of a new species. Bollettino di Zoologia Agraria e Bachicoltura 29: 51-55.