Quadrastichus erythrinae (Erythrina gall wasp)
- Summary of Invasiveness
- Taxonomic Tree
- Distribution Table
- Habitat List
- Host Plants and Other Plants Affected
- List of Symptoms/Signs
- Biology and Ecology
- Means of Movement and Dispersal
- Pathway Vectors
- Impact Summary
- Threatened Species
- Risk and Impact Factors
- Links to Websites
- Principal Source
- Distribution Maps
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IdentityTop of page
Preferred Scientific Name
- Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim
Preferred Common Name
- Erythrina gall wasp
International Common Names
- English: erythrina gall wasp (EGW)
Summary of InvasivenessTop of page
Unusual growths, caused by Erythrina gall wasp (Quadrastichus erythrinae), on leaves and young shoots of coral trees (Erythrina spp). alerts to the presence of this emerging invasive species. Quadrastichus erythrinae measures a mere 1.5mm and may be spread easily via infected leaves from infected Erythrina specimens.
Taxonomic TreeTop of page
- Domain: Eukaryota
- Kingdom: Metazoa
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Subphylum: Uniramia
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Hymenoptera
- Family: Eulophidae
- Genus: Quadrastichus
- Species: Quadrastichus erythrinae
DescriptionTop of page
Female: Length 1.45–1.6 mm. Dark brown with yellow markings. Head yellow, except gena posteriorly brown. Antenna pale brown except scape posteriorly pale. Pronotum dark brown. The mid lobe of mesoscutum with a ‘‘V’’ shaped or inverted triangular dark brown area from anterior margin, the remainder yellow. Scapula yellow. Scutellum, axilla and dorsellum brown to light brown. Propodeum dark brown. Gaster brown. Fore and hind coxae brown. Mid coxa almost pale. Femora mostly brown to light brown. Specimens from Mauritius are generally darker than those from Singapore. Oviposter sheath not protruding, short in dorsal view (Kim Delvare and La Salle 2004).
Male. Length 1.0–1.15 mm. Pale coloration white to pale yellow as opposed to yellow in female. Head and antenna pale. Pronotum dark brown (but in lateral view, only upper half dark brown; lower half yellow to white). Scutellum and dorsellum pale brown. Axilla pale. Propodeum dark brown. Gaster in anterior half pale; remainder dark brown. Legs all pale. Antenna with 4 funicular segments; without the whorl of setae; F1 distinctly shorter than the other segments and slightly transverse; about 1.4 wider than long. Ventral plaque extending 0.4– 0.5 length of scape and placed in apical half. Gaster shorter than female. Genitalia elongate, with digitus about 0.4 length of the long, exserted aedagus (Kim Delvare and La Salle 2004).
DistributionTop of page Native range: Quadrastichus erythrinae is believed to be native to Africa.
Known introduced range: First collected in Florida on coral trees Erythrina variegata, now in Miami and Hawaii; also known from Singapore, Mauritius and Reunion, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, India, Thailand, Philippines, American Samoa, Guam and in the Amami Islands and Okinawa in Japan.
Distribution TableTop of page
The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.Last updated: 23 Apr 2020
HabitatTop of page The Erythrina gall wasp infests Erythrina species, of which there are approximately 110 in tropical regions around the world. Erythrina are used as ornamentals, ‘living fences’, and nitrogen-fixing components of agroforestry systems
Habitat ListTop of page
|Terrestrial – Managed||Managed forests, plantations and orchards||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Urban / peri-urban areas||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-natural||Natural forests||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
Host Plants and Other Plants AffectedTop of page
List of Symptoms/SignsTop of page
|Leaves / abnormal forms|
|Leaves / abnormal leaf fall|
|Stems / galls|
Biology and EcologyTop of page
A single female Erythrina gall wasp carries on average approximately 320 eggs (Yang et al. 2004).
Studies conducted by the Hawaii Department of Agriculture (HDOA) on Erythrina gall wasp indicate a life cycle (egg to adult) of about 20 days. A one-day old female wasp contains about 60 mature eggs in its ovaries. The adult female wasp exhibited a preference for depositing eggs in very young terminal leaves and stems, but not mature leaves. Adult wasps not given any food survived less than 3 days (males - 2.5 days, females - 2.9 days) while those provided with honey lived longer (males - 10.3 days, females - 6.1 days). The sex ratio of emerging wasps in lab-infested plants was 7 males to 1 female (Heu et al. 2006).
Means of Movement and DispersalTop of page
Introduction pathways to new locations
Ship: Boats carrying fallen infested leaves raise the risk of spreading Erythrina gall wasp (Quadrastichus erythrinae) (SPC 2006).
Local dispersal methods
Hikers' clothes/boots:Quadrastichus erythrinae may be transported on many items, including clothing and flowers (SPC 2006).
Wind dispersed:Quadrastichus erythrinae may be spread via the wind (SPC 2006).
Pathway VectorsTop of page
Impact SummaryTop of page
ImpactTop of page
Like other gall-forming eulophid wasps, the Erythrina gall wasp inserts its eggs inside young leaf and stem tissue. The wasp larvae, which develop within plant tissue, induce the formation of galls in the leaflets and petioles. As the infestation progresses, leaves curl and appear deformed while petioles and shoots become swollen. After feeding is complete, larvae pupate within the leaf and stem tissue. After pupation within the galls, adult wasps emerge after cutting exit holes through to the outside. Heavily galled leaves and stems result in a loss of growth and vigour. Severe infestations can cause defoliation and death of trees (Yang et al. 2004; Heu et al. 2006).
The Erythrina gall wasp infests Erythrina spp. of which there are approximately 110 mostly in tropical regions around the world. (Kim et al. 2004). Erythrina spp. are also known as coral trees and have a variety of functions in different locations. In Taiwan they are highly associated with farming and fishing activities (Yang et al. 2004). As indicated by its Latin name "erythros" meaning red, its obvious red flowers have been used as a sign of the arrival of spring and as a working calendar by tribal peoples (Yang et al. 2004). Specifically, the blooming of its showy red flowers serves as a signal to the coastal people to begin their ceremonies for catching flying fish, and for the Puyama people to plant sweet potatoes (Yang et al. 2004).
In Hawaii the Erythrina gall wasp infests coral trees, Erythrina variegata, E. crista-galli and the native E. sandwicensis (Heu et al. 2006). E. sandwicensis, known as the wiliwili tree, is endemic to Hawaii and a “keystone species in Hawaii's lowland dry forest, one of the most endangered ecosystems in the world.” For a closer look at the threat posed by the Erythrina gall wasp to the native Hawaii wiliwili, please see Wiliwili on Maui: threatened by the Erythrina gall wasp . Control of the spread of Erythrina gall wasp in Hawaii was predicted to cost over $1 million in 2008 (Brannon, 2007).
Threatened SpeciesTop of page
Risk and Impact FactorsTop of page Impact outcomes
- Reduced native biodiversity
- Parasitism (incl. parasitoid)
BibliographyTop of page
Aliens-L 24-Jan-2006 JohnMauremootoo (CABI-Africa) Erythrina Gall Wasp in Mauritius
B. Napompeth, 2006. RE: [pestnet] Erythrina gall wasp - American Samoa. (Email posting).
Brannon, J. (2007, March 23). Dying trees cost $1M a year. The Honolulu Advertiser [online – accessed 07/01/2009]. http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/2007/Mar/23/ln/FP703230359.html
Erythrina Gall Wasp (Quadrastichus erythinae), in American Samoa. 2006. Pest Alert (ISSN 1727 8473). Plant Protection Service, Secretariat of the Pacific Community.
Gates, M. & Delvare, G. (2008). A new species of Eurytoma (Hymenoptera: Eurytomidae) attacking Quadrastichus spp. (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) galling Erythrina spp. (Fabaceae), with a summary of African Eurytoma biology and species checklist. Zootaxa 1751: 1–24.
Hawaiian Ecosystems at Risk Project (HEAR), 2006. Species Info Quadrastichus erythrinae (Eulophidae) http://www.hear.org/species/quadrastichus_erythrinae/
Heu, R.A., Tsuda, D.M., Nagamine, W.T., Yalemar, J.A. and Suh, T.H. 2006. Erythrina Gall Wasp Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), New Pest Advisory. Department of Agriculture: Manoa (Hawaii). http://www.hawaiiag.org/hdoa/npa/npa05-03-EGW.pdf
Hurley, T. 2005. Tiny wasp may kill off native trees, Hawaii Advertiser.
I. Buldawoo, 2006. [Aliens-L] Re Erythrina Gall Wasp in Mauritius. (Email posting).
Kami, P. (2008). Re Pestnet, 1 Dec. (Email posting).
Kaya, T. (2007, June 18). Wasp swap: A relief for wiliwili? The Maui News [online – accessed 06/01/2009]. http://www.mauinews.com/page/content.detail/id/31519.html
Kim, I., Delvare, G. and La Salle, J. 2004. A new Species of Quadrastichus (Hymenoptera: Euphidae): A Gall-Inducing Pest on Erythrina (Fabaceae), J. HYM. RES. 13(2): 243-249.
Kranz, B. (2008). Pestnet, 21 Jan (Email posting)
Lal, S. N. (2008). Pestnet, 29 Nov (Email posting)
Li, H.-M. et al. (2006). Potential global range expansion of a new invasive species, the erythrina gall wasp, Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim (insecta: Hymenoptera: Eulophidae). Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 54 (2): pp. 229-234.
Liebregts, W. (2008). [Personal communication – Pestnet, 28 Nov]
Medeiros, A. (2008). [Personal communication – Pestnet, 28 Nov]
Messing, R. H. et al. (2008). Using host plant relationships to help determine origins of the invasive Erythrina gall wasp, Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae). Biological Invasions. pp. 1-9 [article in press].
Mille, C. (2008). Pestnet, 28 Nov (Email posting)
Oishi, D. (2008). Pestnet, 29 Nov (Email posting)
Rubinoff, Daniel; Brenden S. Holland; Alexandra Shibata; Russell H. Messing, and Mark G. Wright, 2010. Rapid Invasion Despite Lack of Genetic Variation in the Erythrina Gall Wasp (Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim). Pacific Science (2010), vol. 64, no. 1:23–31
Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) Pest Focus - February 2006 Erythrina gall wasp (Quadrastichus erythrinae)
Tanji, E. (2008, November 29). Insects being released to attack gall wasps. The Maui News [online – accessed 06/01/2009]. http://www.mauinews.com/page/content.detail/id/511802.html
Thomas, P. (2005). Wiliwili on Maui: threatened by the Erythrina gall wasp [online - accessed 07/01/2009] http://www.hear.org/issues/wiliwilionmaui/
Uechi, Nami., Takumi Uesato and Junichi Yukawa., 2007. Detection of an invasive gall-inducing pest, Quadrastichus erythrinae (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), causing damage to Erythrina variegata L. (Fabaceae) in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan Entomological Science (2007) 10, 209–212
Walker, K. 2007. Erythrina gall wasp (Quadrastichus erythrinae) Pest and Diseases Image Library. http://www.padil.gov.au/viewPestDiagnosticImages.aspx?id=989
Wiley, J. & Skelley, P. (2006). Erythrina Gall Wasp, Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim, in Florida [online – accessed 06/01/2008]. http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/pi/enpp/ento/gallwasp.html
Xu, T. et al. (2008). Efficacy of systemic insecticides on the gall wasp Quadrastichus erythrinae in wiliwili trees (Erythrina spp.). Pest Management Science 65(2): pp. 163 - 169. http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext/121428027/PDFSTART
Yang, M., Tung, G., La Salle, J. and Wu, M. 2004. Outbreak of erythrina gall wasp (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) on Erythrina spp. (Fabaceae) in Taiwan.
ReferencesTop of page
Culik MP, Martins Ddos S, Ventura JA, Costa VA, 2014. The invasive gall wasp Quadrastichus erythrinae (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) in South America: is classical biological control needed? Biocontrol Science and Technology, 24(8):971-975. http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/cbst20
Das BK, Barindra Talukdar, 2011. Record of invasive Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim, gall wasp on Erythrina variegata L. from Eastern India with notes on gall morphologies. Insect Environment, 17(1):9-11
EPPO, 2014. PQR database. Paris, France: European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization. http://www.eppo.int/DATABASES/pqr/pqr.htm
Etienne J, Dumbardon-Martial E, 2013. Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim: a formidable pest for erythrina in Guadeloupe and Martinique (Hymenoptera, Eulophidae, Tetrastichinae). (Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim: un redoutable ravageur pour les érythrines de Guadeloupe et de Martinique (Hymenoptera, Eulophidae, Tetrastichinae).) Bulletin de la Société Entomologique de France, 118(2):155-158
Medianero, E., Zachrisson, B., 2019. Erythrina gall wasp, Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim, 2004 (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae: Tetrastichinae): a new pest in Central America. BioInvasions Records, 8(2), 452-456. doi: 10.3391/bir.2019.8.2.28
SPC, 2006. Erythrina gall wasp (Quadrastichus erythrinae), in American Samoa. PestAlert, 35. February 2006. Plant Protection Service Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Suva, Fiji Islands
Yang MM, Tung GS, Salle J la, Wu ML, 2004. Outbreak of erythrina gall wasp (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) on Erythrina spp. (Fabaceae) in Taiwan. Plant Protection Bulletin Taipei, 46(4):391-396
CABI, Undated. Compendium record. Wallingford, UK: CABI
CABI, Undated a. CABI Compendium: Status inferred from regional distribution. Wallingford, UK: CABI
CABI, Undated b. CABI Compendium: Status as determined by CABI editor. Wallingford, UK: CABI
Culik M P, Martins D dos S, Ventura J A, Costa V A, 2014. The invasive gall wasp Quadrastichus erythrinae (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) in South America: is classical biological control needed? Biocontrol Science and Technology. 24 (8), 971-975. http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/cbst20 DOI:10.1080/09583157.2014.900735
Das B K, Barindra Talukdar, 2011. Record of invasive Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim, gall wasp on Erythrina variegata L. from Eastern India with notes on gall morphologies. Insect Environment. 17 (1), 9-11.
Etienne J, Dumbardon-Martial E, 2013. Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim: a formidable pest for erythrina in Guadeloupe and Martinique (Hymenoptera, Eulophidae, Tetrastichinae). (Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim: un redoutable ravageur pour les érythrines de Guadeloupe et de Martinique (Hymenoptera, Eulophidae, Tetrastichinae).). Bulletin de la Société Entomologique de France. 118 (2), 155-158.
Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG), 2011. Global Invasive Species Database (GISD). In: Global Invasive Species Database (GISD), Auckland, New Zealand: University of Auckland. http://www.issg.org/database
Medianero E, Zachrisson B, 2019. Erythrina gall wasp, Quadrastichus erythrinae Kim, 2004 (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae: Tetrastichinae): a new pest in Central America. BioInvasions Records. 8 (2), 452-456. DOI:10.3391/bir.2019.8.2.28
ContributorsTop of page
- Reviewed by: Gene-Sheng Tung Forest Protection Division, Taiwan Forestry Research Institute, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC
- Last Modified: Friday, February 26, 2010
Distribution MapsTop of page
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