New UK wasp species a gardeners friend

17th November 2009
rss feed
 

Cold Frames Collection

Gardeners waging war on whitefly could soon be able to call in the cavalry - or should that be air support - in the form of wasps.

According to the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), scientists have discovered a UK species of wasp that preys on the pests that often attack brassicas and other ornamental varieties.

Natural History Museum expert Dr Andrew Polaszek spotted the Encarsia aleurochitonis emerging from an adult whitefly - the first recorded sighting of the tiny European species in the UK.

It is believed that the one millimetre-long wasp may have set up home in the UK a while ago, but has been overlooked due to its size.

While most humans are wary of wasps due to their potential to deliver a nasty sting, Dr Polaszek revealed that they do a lot of unseen good work.

"There are dozens of parasitoid wasps right under our noses keeping a lot of pests under control without us knowing theyre there," he said.

"They provide an ecosystem service - and its not until things get out of balance that were aware of what theyre doing."

Meanwhile, the RHS has launched a new research project aimed at studying the role of plants in increasing the biodiversity of gardens.ADNFCR-1495-ID-19464962-ADNFCR

 

Visitor Comments

There are currently no comments for this article. Use the form below to be the first person to add comment.

Add Your Comment

 
* Please fill all required fields

Excellent

stars

36 customers have written a review on Trustpilot

Latest reviews

review stars

Excellent Product

well designed, prompt delivery, lovely people and very easy to assemble. Looks great and robust. Looking forward to using it in the spring

Challis

Challis

review stars

Excellent service throughout!

The finished product has been admired by everyone who has seen it. So well constructed and designed. Looking forward to the Spring and using it to br

Mr Mee

Mr Mee

review stars

Just perfect!

We bought it too late in the season to really benefit from it's potential this year. But it looks great at the bottom of the garden and can't wait to

Mrs Valerie Whiteside

Mrs Valerie Whiteside

Trustpilot