"So, naturalists observe, a flea has smaller fleas that on him prey; and these have smaller still to bite ’em; and so proceed ad infinitum."
- Jonathan Swift

January 10, 2010

January 5 - Peristenus digoneutis

If you liked the movie Alien, then you might be a fan of parasitic wasps, such as Peristenus digoneutis. These insects, sometimes incredibly tiny, capture and kill other insects (in this case little plant bugs) that they then lay their eggs into. The larvae hatch out and eat their hosts from the inside out. Although it's rather gruesome, these parasitoids have been developed as biocontrol agents to combat insect pests.


  1. Am I misinterpreting the picture? It just looks like two aphids and ant to me.

    Very nice blog, btw.

  2. Thanks, Brian! Those are plant bugs and it's not an ant, it's one of the parasitic wasps, in the act of laying her eggs in one.