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Abstract

Studies during 1961, 1964, and 1967 have revealed the presence of more than 100 species of solitary wasps occurring in restricted areas of sand or sandy gravel along the Snake River within 10 miles of the Research Station. In some small areas many species nest together, and some species are represented by great numbers of individuals. Also present are great numbers of parasites (flies and wasps), the majority of them not at all host-specific. Three questions at once present themselves: (1) how do so many species of wasps manage to co-exist in these restricted areas; (2) how do they survive in the presence of so many parasites occurring in these nesting aggregations; and (3) to what extent are the many species differences in nesting behavior a reflection of these two factors: avoidance of competition and survival in the face of an abundance of non-host-specific parasites? Project Number 115.

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