Taxonomic placing: Insecta, Holometabola.
Common name: Sawflies, chalcids, ants, bees.
Morphology: The adults of the order Hymenoptera bear two pairs of membranous wings with reduced venation. In plant-feeding species the mouth parts are adapted for chewing, whereas in most other species they are adapted for sucking. The antennae are long, usually with more than ten segments and the ovipositor is well-developed. This order, which contains over 100,000 described species, is among the largest of the insect orders. It is subdivided into two suborders.
Symphyta (sawtails and hornflies). These insects usually have only a single annual generation. This group includes mostly phytophagous species. The adult abdomen is broadly attached to the thorax, and the larvae bear a distinct head and usually carry more than five pairs of prolegs. They feed on foliage and bore in wood.
Middle Eastern plant pests belong to the families
Apocrita (chalcids, ants and bees). Members of this suborder usually raise several annual generations. They include many species that parasitize other arthropods (and are thus used in the biological control of pests). Others are the Agaonidae, which facilitate fig pollination and the gall-inducing Cynipidae. The ants, wasps and bees are also included in this suborder. The abdomen of the adults is deeply constricted before joining the thorax and the larvae are usually devoid of prolegs.
Major natural enemies in the Middle East belong to the families