Copidosoma Ratzeburg 1844,

Zuparko, Robert L., 2015, Annotated Checklist of California Encyrtidae (Hymenoptera), Zootaxa 4017 (1), pp. 1-126: 22-26

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Copidosoma Ratzeburg 1844


Copidosoma Ratzeburg 1844 

Hosts. Lepidoptera  : Argyresthiidae  , Blastobasidae  , Coleophoridae  , Gelechiidae  , Geometridae  , Hepialidae  , Noctuidae  , Notodontidae  , Oecophoridae  , Pyralidae  , Tortricidae  , Yponomeutidae 

albipes ( Westwood 1837 b: 440)  [New state record]

Type. OUNH

Distribution. W

Host/habitat. Anacampsis innocuella  , A. niveopulvella  , A. populella  , Choristoneura conflictana  , Coleophora viburniella  , Epinotia solandriana  , Gelechia turpella  , Holcocera modestella  , Pseudosciaphila duplex 

Remarks. Zolnerowich (in litt.) reported specimens of C. innocuellae Barron  from California, but did not note the exact locations. In 2005, Guerrieri & Noyes synonymized C. innocuellae  under C. albipes  , thus extending the latter’s distribution range from Europe to the Holarctic.

bakeri ( Howard 1898 a: 238)  ( Berecyntus  ) [New state record] ( UCRC) Type. USNM

Distribution. W (El Dorado, Los Angeles, Orange, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Siskiyou, Sutter) Host/habitat. Agrotis orthogonia  , A. venerabilis  , Apamea devastator  , Euxoa auxiliaris  , E. detersa  , E. flavicollis  , E. intrita  , E. lidia  , E. messoria  , E. ochrogaster  , E. scandens  , E. tristicula  , E. sp., Feltia jaculifera  , F. subgothica  , F. sp., Lacinipolia renigera  , Peridroma saucia  , Rachiplusia  nu, Trichoplusia  ni, Xestia smithii 

Remarks. Specimens identified as “ C. bakeri  ?” have been collected from Mono County ( CSCA), and Kern and Riverside Counties, with Agrotis ipsilon  noted as a host ( UCRC). Peck (1963) reported Pissodes strobi  ( Coleoptera  : Curculionidae  ) as a host, citing MacAloney in Taylor (1929) as the authority. However, MacAloney did not positively associate C. bakeri  with P. strobi  , he merely reported that the parasitoid was reared from pine leaders which were infested with the weevil—undoubtedly C. bakeri  had emerged from an unseen lepidopteran which was also in the plant material.

bucculatricis ( Howard 1892: 366)  ( Pentacnemus  ) [New state record] ( USNM, UCDC)

Type. USNM

Distribution. N (San Diego, Trinity)

Host/habitat. Argyresthia aureoargentella  , A. freyella  , A. libocedrella  , A. thuiella  , Coleophora ulmifoliella  , Coleotechnites thujaella 

Remarks. Noyes (2001), citing Peck (1963), noted “ Diptera  (leaf miner)” as a host, but the original report upon which this record is based is in fact Proctor (1938), in which C. bucculatricis  is reported from a leaf miner on arborvitae ( Cupressaceae  ), without any indication as to the taxon of the leaf miner.

capsicum Burks 1967: 54  [New state record] ( EMEC, RLZC) Type. USNM

Distribution. W (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Santa Barbara, Sonoma  ) Host/habitat. Gnorimoschema gudmanella  , Phthorimaea operculella  , Symmetrischema capsica  , Diatraea  sp, Lineodes  sp.

celaenae Howard 1885: 11  [New state record] ( EMEC, LACM, USNM, UCDC, UCRC)

Type. USNM

Distribution. N (Alameda, Alpine, Calaveras, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Glenn, Inyo, Kern, Napa, Lake, Lassen, Los Angeles, Marin, Modoc, Monterey, Napa, Plumas, Riverside, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Clara, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Solano, Tulare, Ventura)

Host/habitat. Agrotis orthogonia  , Eupsilia  spp., Euxoa declarata  , E. messoria  , E. ochrogaster  , E. perpolita  , E. scolastica  , E. tristicula  , Feltia jaculifera  , Lacinipolia renigera  , Peridroma saucia  , Polia purpurissata  , Protolampra rufipectus  , Rhynchagrotis cupida  , Xestia mustelina  ; NEW: Agrotis ipsilon  ( EMEC), Agrotis  sp. ( UCRC)

cervius ( Walker 1846: 177)  [New state record] ( BMNH, CAS, ROM, UCDC, UCRC)

Type. BMNH

Distribution. W (Fresno, Kern, Marin, Orange, Placer, Riverside, San Bernardino, Solano, Sonoma, Tulare)

Host/habitat. Cosmorhoe ocellata  , Eupithecia abietaria  , E. analoga  , E. assimilata  , E. centaureata  , E. expallidata  , E. gueneata  , E. haworthiata  , E. innotata  , E. laricata  , E. linariata  , E. pimpinellata  , E. pusillata  , E. rosmarinata  , E. simpliciata  , E. succenturiata  , E. tripunctaria  , E.? trisignaria, E. unedonata  , E. vulgata  , E. spp., Perizoma affinitata  , P. bifasciatum 

Remarks. Guerrieri & Noyes (2005) note that host records of Chloroclystis  v-ata ( Lepidoptera  : Geometridae  ) and Cydia strobiliella  ( Lepidoptera  : Tortricidae  ) require confirmation.

deceptor Miller 1958: 58 

Type. CNC

Distribution. N (Calaveras, Mariposa, Riverside, San Bernardino, Tulare, Tuolumne)

Host/habitat. Acleris variana  , Argyresthia aureoargentella  , Battaristis vittella  , Coleotechnites apicitripunctella  , C. canusella  , C. huntella  , C. milleri  , C. moreonella  , C. piceaella  , C. starki  , C. thujaella  , C. spp., Epinotia nanana  , Exoteleia dodecella  , E. nepheos  , E. pinifoliella  , Recurvaria  spp.

Remarks. Craighead (1950) reported Recurvaria nanella Denis & Schiffermüller  (a Palearctic species) as a host of C. deceptor  , but this undoubtedly was based on European records of C. nanellae Silvestri  , the name by which the American species was known until Miller (1958) separated the two taxa.

floridanum ( Ashmead 1900: 365)  ( Berecyntus  )

Type. USNM

Distribution. W (Alameda, Calaveras, Contra Costa, Fresno, Imperial, Kern, Lake, Lassen, Los Angeles, Marin, Merced, Nevada, Orange, Riverside, Sacramento, San Diego, San Joaquin, Santa Clara, Sierra, Solano, Stanislaus, Tulare)

Host/habitat. Agrapha agnata  , A. tarassota  , Argyrogramma signatum  , Autographa gamma  , Chrysodeixis acuta  , C. argentifera  , C. chalcites  , C. eriosoma  , C. sp., Mamestra brassicae  , Nebrarctia obliqua  , Plusia  sp., Polychrysia moneta  , Pseudoplusia includens  , Rachiplusia  nu, Thysanoplusia orichalcea  , T. intermixta  , Trichoplusia  ni; NEW: Autoplusia egena  ( CSCA), A. oliveacea  ( LACM)

Remarks. This is a cosmopolitan species, very similar to C. truncatellum  , and pre- 1988 records of either species should not be taken at face value. Noyes (1988 a) and Guerrieri & Noyes (2005) noted the characteristics useful for separating the two, and suggest that C. floridanum  is probably host-specific on noctuids from the subfamily Plusiinae  , and that records from non-plusiines may be attributable to C. truncatellum  . Conversely, they note that the following host records of C. truncatellum  are probably instead attributable to C. floridanum  : Autographa californica  , A. egena  , A. gamma  , A. sp., Euchalcia modestoides  , Lamprotes  c-aureum, Plusia festucae  , Rachiplusia  ou, Syngrapha epigaea  . De Santis & Monetti (2008) reported Peridroma saucia  as a host, but this is probably a misidentification. A short series ( LACM) was labelled “ D. menippe  ” (= Danaus plexippus Linnaeus  , Nymphalidae  ), but this also may be a misidentification.

gelechiae Howard 1885: 10  [New state record] ( RLZC)

Type. USNM

Distribution. N (Calaveras, Lassen, Marin, Modoc, San Mateo)

Host/habitat. Coleotechnites atrupictella  , Gnorimoschema gallaeasterella  , G. gallaesolidaginis  , G. gibsoniella  , G. salinaris  , G. sp., Epiblema scudderiana 

Remarks. De Santis (1979) reported this species from Peru, attacking Tuta  (= Gnorimoschema  ) absoluta (Meyrick)  . Since all other records of this species are from North America  , I believe this single South American record represents a different species.

howardi Zolnerowich & Zuparko 2011  ( Parapsilophrys  )

Type. USNM

Distribution. N (Lake, Lassen, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Stanislaus)

Host/habitat. Acleris  sp., Anacampsis niveopulvella  , Apotomis  sp., Archips  sp., Gelechia lynceella  , G. sp., Pandemis canadana, Recurvia  sp.

Remarks. This is a replacement name for C. gelechiae Howard 1898 a  , a junior homonym of C. gelechiae Howard 1885  . Özdikmen (2011) subsequently proposed the replacement name C. americanum  for this same species.

koehleri Blanchard 1940: 107 

Type. MLPA

Distribution. E (Southern California)

Host/habitat. Phthorimaea operculella  , Scrobipalpa absoluta  , Symmetrischema tangolias 

Remarks. The initial importations of Copidosoma  stock from South America  released in California for control of P. operculella  were originally credited to this species. However, as Annecke & Mynhardt (1974) pointed out, these importations were actually of C. desantisi  (which failed to establish). But in the 1960 s, C. koehleri  was imported from Argentina  and did establish ( Oatman 1978). Cydia molesta  ( Lepidoptera  : Tortricidae  ) has been recorded as a host, but this is doubtful.

pyralidis ( Ashmead 1888: 15)  ( Encyrtus  )

Type. USNM

Distribution. E (San Bernardino, Sutter, Yolo, Yuba) Host/habitat. Anarsia lineatella  , Dichomeris flavocostella  , D. setosella  Remarks. This species was described from Florida, and has been reported from throughout the eastern USA, as far west as Utah, as well from Europe ( Peck 1963), although Guerrieri & Noyes (2005) suggest the European records refer to C. varicorne  (q. v.). In 1932, specimens from the eastern USA were released in Yuba County, and subsequently recovered ( Clausen 1956 a). Specimens labelled as this species collected from San Bernardino County ( UCRC) may in fact be descendants of the material imported from France, and therefore represent C. varicorne  , which may prove to be the senior synonym of C. pyralidis  .

truncatellum ( Dalman 1820: 168) 

Type. NHRS

Distribution. W (Fresno, Lassen, Monterey, Nevada, Orange, Santa Clara, Sierra, Solano)

Host/habitat. Actinotia polyodon  , Agrotis malefida  , A. sp., Anomis erosa  , Apamea monoglypha  , A. sublustris  , Catocala electa  , Euxoa lidia  , E. obelisca  , E. temera  , E. sp., Hadena luteago  , Hepialus humuli  , Mamestra brassicae  , Mocis latipes  , Notodonta ziczac  , Spodoptera ornithogalli  , S. sp., Xestia diatrapezium 

Remarks. This species has been commonly confused with C. floridanum  (q. v.), and similarly has been erroneously associated with numerous hosts (see Guerrieri & Noyes 2005). Noyes (2001) listed this species as a “Biocontrol introduction” in California. However, the species was never purposely imported into the state although an attempt was made to propagate field-collected C. truncatellum  and then release it back in the field ( Clancy 1969).

vagum Howard 1885: 11  [New state record] [ BMNH, CSCA, CNC, LACM, USNM]

Type. USNM

Distribution. N (Riverside, Shasta, Sonoma, Tulare)

Host/habitat. Argyrotaenia quercifoliana  , Aroga trialbamaculella  , Filatima pseudacaciella  , Gelechia  sp., Hofmannophila pseudospretella  ; NEW Chionodes kubai  ( CSCA)

varicorne (Nees 1834: 214)  [New state record] ( EMEC)

Type. OUNH

Distribution. E (Colusa, Orange, San Bernardino)

Host/habitat. Acleris hippophaeana  , Anarsia eleagnella  , A. ephippias  , A. lineatella  , A. sagmatica  , A. spartiella  , A. sp., Compsolechia anisogramma  , Cydia funebrana  , C. molesta  , C. pomonella  , Cydia  sp., Dichromeris eridantis  , Eucosma  sp., Gypsosoma minutana  , Lobesia incultana  , Tortrix viridana 

Remarks. In 1931 a biocontrol program was initiated against Anarsia lineatella  using Copidosoma pyralidis  , an important parasitoid of this species known from the eastern USA, and thought to occur in Europe as well. European specimens were easier to obtain, and so specimens from France were imported into the USA, released near Yuba City (Sutter County) and Chino (San Bernardino County), and subsequently recovered ( Oatman 1978). However, Guerrieri & Noyes (2005) opined that the French populations were actually C. varicorne  , and recovered specimens ( EMEC) certainly key out to that species. In 1932, additional releases of domestically obtained C. pyralidis  were made in Yuba County (and subsequently recovered as well), and so “true” C. pyralidis  is present in California, although C. pyralidis  may prove to be a junior synonym of C. varicorne  .


Remarks. Copidosoma filicorne ( Dalman 1820)  is an Old World species that became established in eastern North America—a single specimen ( UCDC) from Fresno County closely resembles this species, although it varies in several details. Additionally, at least 5 other undescribed species occur in California (Zolnerowich, in litt.).

Copidosomopsis Girault 1915 a 

Hosts. Lepidoptera  : Pyralidae  , Tortricidae 

plethorica ( Caltagirone 1966: 146)  ( Pentalitomastix  ) Type. CAS

Distribution. E (Alameda, Butte, Fresno, Kern, Madera, Santa Clara) Host/habitat. Amyelois transitella  , Apomyelois ceratoniae  , Cydia caryana 

Remarks. This species was introduced into the San Joaquin Valley from the 1960 s through the 1970 s from Mexico ( Meals & Caltagirone 1995). Although the initial importations probably failed ( Clausen 1978 c, as Pentalitomastix  sp.), by 1979 this species had established in both the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valleys ( Legner 1983).

tanytmemus Caltagirone 1985: 705 

Type. CAS

Distribution. C (El Dorado, Los Angeles, Stanislaus)

Host/habitat. Ephestia kuehniella 

Remarks. The holotype was originally deposited with the Division of Biological Control, University of California, Berkeley, but was transferred to the California Academy of Sciences in 1993 ( Zuparko & Hamai 1994).


Remarks. Specimens that represent an undescribed species were collected in Marin and Modoc counties ( RLZC).


University of California, Riverside


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History


California State Collection of Arthropods


R. M. Bohart Museum of Entomology


Essig Museum of Entomology


Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County


University of Newcastle


California Academy of Sciences


Royal Ontario Museum


Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids, and Nematodes


Swedish Museum of Natural History, Entomology Collections












Copidosoma Ratzeburg 1844

Zuparko, Robert L. 2015


Caltagirone 1985: 705


Burks 1967: 54

plethorica (

Caltagirone 1966: 146


Miller 1958: 58


Blanchard 1940: 107

floridanum (

Ashmead 1900: 365

bakeri (

Howard 1898: 238

bucculatricis (

Howard 1892: 366

pyralidis (

Ashmead 1888: 15


Howard 1885: 11


Howard 1885: 10


Howard 1885: 11

cervius (

Walker 1846: 177

albipes (

Westwood 1837: 440

truncatellum (

Dalman 1820: 168