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Biocontrol introduction

Target pest: Sirex noctilio (Hymenoptera: Siricidae), sirex wood wasp

Agent introduced: Rhyssa persuasoria persuasoria (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae)


1928-31, 1950, 1964

Import source:

1928-31 and 1950 Wales and England, 1964 California

Import notes:

Cameron et al. (1989) - in 1964 two consignments of 'Rhyssa' spp., a total of 16 males and eight females were received from California. These were later identified as a mixture of male R. persuasoria persuasoria, male and female R. alaskensis and, most numerous, male and female Pseudorhyssa maculicoxis. No oviposition was seen in the insectary and no progeny emerged.



Release details:

Cameron et al. (1989) - small liberations were made at Rotorua, Hanmer, Nelson and elsewhere. In total 179 females were released. Importations made in 1950 and 1964 were not released. Redistributed from Nelson and Hanmer.


Cameron et al. (1989) - first recoveries were made in 1936-37 at Moutere (Nelson) and Hanmer. By 1950 R.persuasoria persuasoria establishment was also known at Riverhead (north of Auckland), Atiamuri (near Tokoroa), Matahina, Rotorua, Taupo, Darfield and Eyrewell (Canterbury) and Dumgee (Blenheim). Had spread to most exotic forests by 1959 and all forests by 1966.

Impacts on target:

Cameron et al. (1989) - in conjunction with other parasitoids Rhyssa persuasoria persuasoria has been credited with reducing S. noctilio damage.


Cameron PJ, Hill RL, Bain J, Thomas WP (1989). A Review of Biological Control of Invertebrate Pests and Weeds in New Zealand 1874-1987. Technical Communication No 10. CAB International Institute of Biological Control. DSIR Entomology Division. 424p.