Saturday, August 11, 2012

Braconid Wasp lays eggs on bad caterpillar

Adult (bad)Tomato Hornworm with no (good)Braconid Wasp Eggs. Be careful of the sharp stinger at the end of its tail. Carefully remove this caterpillar with your gloves on, and put into a ziploc bag and toss in the garbage.

A Tomato Hornworm that has many beneficial Braconid Wasp eggs laid on its back. Leave this bug on your plant and the Braconid eggs will hatch and you have your own little army. Braconid Wasps are small. They have a tiny waist. They will sting if you pester them, but they are essential in the organic garden. We usually leave ONE tomato plant and put all the the TOMATO HORNWORMS that have Braconid Wasp eggs on them together there.

Picture of an emerging Braconid Wasp which has hatched right off the back of the Tomato Hornworm.

Picture of an Adult Braconid Wasp. These are the GOOD GUYS. Teach your kids, teach your friends. Protect them.

Picture of a Braconid Wasp laying eggs on a BAD caterpillar.
Nature's own defense mechanism is always the best.