Cynipid gall wasps play an important role in structuring oak arthropod communities. Wasps in the Cynipini tribe typically lay their eggs in oaks (Quercus L.), and induce the formation of a ‘gall’, which is a tumor-like growth of plant material that surrounds the developing wasp. As the wasp develops, the cynipid and its gall are attacked by a diverse community of natural enemies, including parasitoids, hyperparasitoids, and inquilines. Determining what structures these species-rich natural enemy communities across cynipid gall wasp species is a major question in gall wasp biology. Additionally, gall wasps are ecosystem engineers, as the abandoned gall is used by other invertebrates.The gall-associated insect communities residing on live oaks (Quercus geminata Small and Quercus virginiana Mill.) are emerging as a model system for answering ecological and evolutionary questions ranging from community ecology to the evolution of new species. Documenting the arthropods associated with cynipids in this system will expand our understanding of the mechanisms influencing eco-evolutionary processes, record underexplored axes of biodiversity, and facilitate future work. Here, we present the community of natural enemies and other associates of the asexual generation of the crypt gall wasp, Bassettia pallida Ashmead. We compare the composition of this community to communities recently documented from two other cynipid gall wasps specializing on live oaks along the U.S. Gulf coast, Disholcaspis quercusvirens Ashmead and Belonocnema treatae Mayr. B. pallida and their galls support a diverse arthropod community, including over 25 parasitoids, inquilines, and other associated arthropods spanning 5 orders and 16 families.
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