ISSN 2816-6531

Parasitoids reared from eastern spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clemens) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in Quebec, Canada

authors orcid
authors orcid
Tags: Choristoneura fumiferana, Eastern spruce budworm, Insecta, Lepidoptera, Parasitoid, Quebec, Tortricidae
Number X, 
4 January 2024
draft copy; not for distribution


The eastern spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana (Clemens, 1865), is an irruptive forest insect whose multi-year population explosions can cause significant defoliation leading to mortality of pinaceous hosts, namely spruce (Picea spp.) and balsam fir (Abies balsamea (Linnaeus) Miller) trees. The impact of C. fumiferana on the forestry industry of eastern Canada leads to significant pest management efforts and research into its population dynamics and those of their natural enemies.

In the context of just such a research project, C. fumiferana larvae and pupae were collected within the geographic range of an outbreak in the province of Quebec, Canada, mostly in the Côte-Nord region (Marrec et al. 2018; Legault et al. 2018; Legault et al. 2021; Legault et James 2023). The identity of the caterpillars was confirmed based on their host (Stehr 1967) and their morphology (MacKay 1962; Harvey & Stehr 1967). All brownish larvae collected on balsam fir, white spruce (Picea glauca (Moench) Voss), or black spruce (Picea mariana (Miller) Britton, Sterns & Poggenburgh), and bearing paired white spots on each segment were identified as Choristoneura fumiferana.

Parasitoids and hyperparasitoids (Diptera, Hymenoptera) were reared in the lab from C. fumiferana larvae fed on artificial diet (Hervet et al. 2016) or directly from unfed spruce budworm pupae. Specimens were prepared and identified to the genus or species level using keys based on morphological characteristics (Huber et al. 1996; Eveleigh et al. 2003; Bennett 2008; Fernández-Triana & Huber 2010).


See .csv file.


We thank Cheng Ji for help in preparing and identifying specimens and Catherine Hébert for help in processing and integrating them (both of University of Montreal). We also thank the numerous student volunteers who helped with the insect-rearing program at the University of Montreal in 2014.



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