Hymenoptera

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Related to hymenopterans: order Orthoptera

Hymenoptera

[‚hī·mə′näp·trə]
(invertebrate zoology)
A large order of insects including ants, wasps, bees, sawflies, and related forms; head, thorax and abdomen are clearly differentiated; wings, when present, and legs are attached to the thorax.

Hymenoptera

 

an order of insects characterized by complete metamorphosis. The insects vary in length from 0.2 mm to 6 cm. The order Hymenoptera is divided into the suborders Symphyta (sawflies and horntails), Parasitica (ichneumon flies and gall wasps), and Aculeata (wasps, bees, and ants). Some zoologists adhere to a different classification system.

Most hymenopterans have two pairs of transparent membranous wings. The fore wings are the stronger pair and are the leading ones in flight. The hind wings, which have simplified venation, are linked to the fore wings by hooks and form a single plane with the fore wings in flight. Sometimes wings are absent, as, for example, in worker ants. The mouthparts of primitive hymenopterans are formed for chewing. Higher species have mouthparts fitted for chewing and sucking: the labium is converted into a proboscis, which, in some bees, is longer than the insect’s body. Females have an ovipositor. In wasps, bees, and ants the ovipositor is converted into a sting. In some ants the sting is reduced.

Male hymenopterans develop from unfertilized eggs (haploid eggs), and females develop from diploid eggs that are usually fertilized. The females of only a very few species develop by parthenogenesis. In Parasitica and some Aculeata, polyem-bryony is sometimes observed. The larvae of Symphyta have a well-developed cephalic capsule and three pairs of thoracic legs; in sawflies abdominal prolegs also develop. In Parasitica and Aculeata, the larvae have an underdeveloped cephalic capsule and are wormlike, limbless, and almost immobile. Only the young larvae of a few ichneumon flies marked by hypermetamor-phosis acquire the capacity for independent locomotion. The pupae are exarate; they are often in a cocoon.

Most adult hymenopterans are herbivorous; some are predators. The evolution of flowering plants is closely tied to the evolution of pollinating hymenopterans (bees, wasps). The larvae of Symphyta, gall wasps, and some ichneumon flies feed on plant substances and live on plants or in plant tissues, sometimes causing tissue proliferation (galls). The larvae of some Parasitica and some Aculeata develop as ectoparasites or endoparasites of insects. Complex forms of caring for the young are observed in many Aculeata. Female spider, digger, and other solitary wasps build nests and feed their larvae with killed or paralyzed insects and spiders; solitary bees and Vespidae wasps feed their young a mixture of pollen and nectar. The most complex instincts are observed in such social hymenopterans as ants, social wasps, and social bees.

The oldest hymenopterans are known from the Lower Trias-sic. There are about 90,000 extant species, distributed predominantly in the tropics. Approximately 10,000 species are found in the USSR. Parasitica and some Aculeata (ichneumon flies, sco-liids, tiphiids, and ants) feed on harmful insects; some species are used for biological pest control. Many hymenopterans play a major role in plant pollination. Some species of honey bees yield such valuable products as honey, wax, and propolis. Some hymenopterans, such as sawflies, horntails, and gall wasps, are agricultural and forest pests.

REFERENCES

Zhizn’ zhivotnykh, vol. 3. Moscow, 1969. Pages 422–84.
Malyshev, S. I. Pereponchatokrylye, ikh proiskhozhdenie i evoliutsiia. Moscow, 1959.
Rasnitsyn, A. P. Proiskhozhdenie i evoliutsiia nizshikh pereponchatokrylykh. Moscow, 1969.
Sweetman, H. Biologicheskii metod bor’by s vrednymi nasekomymi i sornymi rasteniiami. Moscow, 1964. (Translated from English.)

G. M. DLUSSKII

References in periodicals archive ?
Anatomy and ontogenesis of hymenopteran leaf galls of Struthanthus vulgaris Mart.
However, a growing number of studies have documented phenological shifts across a diversity of plant and insect communities (e.g., Fitter and Fitter, 2002; Menzel et al., 2006; Diamond et al., 2011), including solitary hymenopterans (Bartomeus et al., 2011).
The average number of hymenopteran parasitoids individuals collected on each sampling occasion was compared between trap types, sampling sites, and seasons using analysis of variance (ANOVA, Kruskal-Wallis test) (Hammer et al.
Two hymenopteran parasitoids were reared from puparia: Proaspicera sp.
Parasitic wasps and sawflies--the hymenopterans without stingers--also make silk cocoons, but it turns out that they use the flat-sheet format, Sutherland and colleagues reported in Molecular Biology and Evolution in November 2007.
Also in Indiana, Brack (1985) found dipterans, trichopterans, coleopterans (including the Asiatic oak weevil), lepidopterans, homopterans, hymenopterans, neuropterans, and plecopterans represented, in decreasing order of importance, in the diet of this species.
Flies and hymenopterans (bees and wasps) also differ in their flight patterns.
Most larvae of this family are instead parasitic on other insects, particularly Hymenopterans (Borror et al., 1992).
The prey of the eastern pipistrelles we captured consisted of two families of Homopterans: Cicadellidae (leafhoppers), Delphacidae (planthoppers); two families of Coleopterans: Carabidae (ground beetles) and Scarabaeidae (scarab beetles); three families of Dipterans: Chironomidae (midges), Tipulidae (crane flies), and Trichoceridae (winter crane flies); two families of Hymenopterans: Ichneumonidae (ichneumons) and Formicidae (ants); and one family of Hemipterans: Lygaeidae (seed bugs; Table II).
Hymenopterans were represented by four families, and were dominated by Formicidae with a frequency of occurrence of 18.8%.
The basis for sex determination in ants, as in other hymenopterans, is haplodiploidy.