Dictyopharid Planthopper with Dryinid Wasp Parasite

April 18th, 2012 - 8:50 PM | Filed under Featured Photos | 1 Comment

~20mm | January 7, 2012 | Tupaciguara, Minas Gerais, Brazil

When I encountered the planthopper above, I had no idea what was going on. While not entirely sure, I assumed that might be a parasite on its abdomen. I had wanted to get a closeup of just the parasite, but when I went to grab the planthopper, it jumped and flew away with little difficulty. The parasite must not have been as much of a hindrance as it would appear.

Here’s a crop of the image above showing the parasite.

Closeup of parasite

It didn’t take much searching on the internet to determine that this must be the larva of a wasp in the family Dryinidae. There are plenty of images of larvae on BugGuide. According to Wikipedia, a larva initially feeds internally on the host. Only later in its development does it protrude the host as shown here.

I feel lucky to have seen this. As is usually the case, this just whets my appetite for more. Now I’ll be on the lookout for the odd looking adult.

A Couple of Dictyopharid Planthoppers

April 15th, 2012 - 9:29 PM | Filed under Featured Photos | 1 Comment

10mm long | December 30, 2011 | Quirinópolis, Goiás, Brazil

These dictyopharid planthoppers are a nice addition to my virtual collection.

It took many attempts before I got this shot where both planthoppers were in the plane of focus. That’s sometimes difficult enough with small subjects, but even more so when they are above your head. I convinced myself the Canon 60D’s flip-out view screen with live view would come in handy for situations like this. Shots like these that I’d otherwise have missed make me feel better about the expenditure.

Dictyopharid

May 25th, 2011 - 6:20 PM | Filed under Featured Photos | No comments

January 20, 2011 | Armonia Nature Preserve, Limon Province, Costa Rica

Just another one of those odd looking dictyopharids.

Dictyopharid Planthopper

March 27th, 2011 - 4:11 PM | Filed under Featured Photos | No comments

January 18, 2011 | Gandoca-Manzanillo NWR, Limon Province, Costa Rica

Planthopper

December 18th, 2010 - 4:15 PM | Filed under Featured Photos | 1 Comment

January 31, 2010 | Tupaciguara, Minas Gerais, Brazil

Based on the snout and the wing venation, I’m gonna say this one is a dictyopharid planthopper.