Braconidae (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonoidea) abundance and richness in four types of land use and preserved rain forest in southern Mexico


  • Betsabé Ruiz-Guerra
  • Juan Carlos López-Acosta
  • Alejandro Zaldivar-Riverón
  • Noé Velázquez-Rosas


Palabras clave:

Braconids, Deforestation, Tropical Rain Forest, Uxpanapa, Wasps, Parasitoids


The abundance, species richness, similarity and dominance of braconid parasitoid wasps were estimated for 4 types of land use (secondary forest, rubber plantations, living fences and  pastures), and remnants of preserved tropical rain forest in southern Mexico. We also analyzed whether specialist (koinobionts) taxa are more negatively affected by forest disturbance than generalists (idiobionts), and whether braconid abundance is correlated with adult host abundance. Braconids were sampled using 3 Malaise traps for each type of land use during March 2010 and May 2011. We collected 143 individuals belonging to 65 species and 15 subfamilies. Species richness and abundance were higher in preserved and secondary
forests, than in other types of land use. Although abundance and richness were low in pastures, these sites potentially contain hosts for braconids. We detected no variation in abundance or species richness by land use, even when comparing idio- and koinobionts. The most dominant species belonged to the genera Apanteles (Microgastrinae) and Hetersopilus (Doryctinae) in all land use types, except pasture, where Bracon (Braconinae)
dominated. We detected a positive relationship between braconids and adult host abundance. Altogether, the 4 types of land use and the preserved forest are able to host a diverse braconid community.