New Galls

Gall Week 2022 ends tomorrow, so I looked around this past week to see what I could see. The fallen leaves of a Mockernut (Carya tomentosa) in Green-Wood proved particularly fruitful.
With oaks, the main gall-inducers are tiny wasps. For hickories, it’s Caryomyia genus flies and Phylloxera genus aphids. This one seems to be Caryomyia cynipsea. When I put this up on iNaturalist, this was the third observation of this species (anywhere)
Here’s another new species, at least for me: Caryomyia eumaris. This is the first New York state observation on iNaturalist.

Galls are created when the inducer’s chemistry re-engineers the plant’s chemistry. The gall itself is abnormal plant growth, which can occur on the leaf, stem/branch, flower, fruit, etc, depending on the species of inducer involved. Inducer larvae grow up inside the gall, which provides protection (at least some protection; there are plenty of parasitic wasps happy to look for a home like this) and food.

2 Responses to “New Galls”

  1. 1 nature969 September 10, 2022 at 11:05 am

    Thank you for sharing your gall photos and expertise. Your photo in the past years ago helped me identify a gall on a bush I had. I started reading your posts since then and have enjoyed them. Thanks for posting your descriptive observations.

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