Differences in native and introduced chalcid parasitoid communities recruited by the invasive chestnut pest Dryocosmus kuriphilus in two Iberian territories.
Dryocosmus kuriphilus (Hymenoptera: Cynipidae) is a global invasive gall wasp and a pest of chestnuts (Castanea spp.). A study of the Chalcidoidea parasitoid community of D. kuriphilus was undertaken over two years, from March 2017 to March 2019, at 15 sites in south and northwest Spain (Málaga and Galicia regions). More than 18,000 galls were collected, and 1153 parasitoids belonging to 22 species of seven chalcidoid families, plus two individuals of an inquiline Cynipidae, Synergus facialis, emerged. Richness was higher in the Málaga region, with 20 species, while 17 parasitoids and one inquiline were identified in Galicia. The parasitism rate of native chalcid parasitoid species in both regions was low. Eupelmus urozonus and Mesopolobus lichtensteini were the most abundant native species. Mesopolobus tibialis was a dominant species in south Spain, while Ormyrus pomaceus was a dominant species in northwest Spain. Our results revealed the existence of a sub-community of univoltine, probably host specialized, parasitoids in south Spain, which overwinter in galls, exhibiting a similar life cycle to Torymus sinensis. These species were Torymus notatus, Aulogymnus bicolor, Aulogymnus obscuripes and Aulogymnus balani. Data on the recovery of T. sinensis after release in the south Spain region show it to be well established, but its numbers are still low in northwest Spain.