Booklice, Barklice, Psocids
Psocids are a common but relatively un-diverse/small order of insects. These tiny insects typically live among tree bark and ground litter. A few are known to live in bird feathers and nests or mammal fur, in a mutualistic relationship/without harming their host. They feed on fungi, lichen, and decaying plant debris, and along with many other insects play an important role in cycling nutrients.
They may have wings or be wingless, however Coal Oil Point is home to 8 species of psocids, all of which are winged.
3000 spp (G&C), 1100 spp(P)
Lacewings, Dusty-wings, Owlflies, Antlions
Neuroptera is a common but not terribly diverse order of insects. They are distinguishable by their densely veined membranous wings, giving the appearance of “lace.” Most species are voracious predators, typically preying on plant pest insects such as aphids. Because of this some neuropterans have been successfully used in the biological control of crop pests. We have found three species of lacewings and one species of dusty-wings at Coal Oil Point.
5000 spp (G&C), 4670 spp(P)
Dusty-wings are notably rare, however we have found one specimen at the reserve. They have fewer veins in their wings than their lacewing relatives and are covered with a characteristic waxy dust. They prey on soft bodied homopterans such as aphids and scale insects both as larvae and adults.
What’s the purpose of the dust?
Brown lacewings are voracious predators and because of this have been used successfully for biological control of agricultural pests (what specifically?). They typically live in wooded areas and prey on plant pests such as aphids and scale insects. Coal Oil Point is home to two species of brown lacewings.
Green lacewings tend to be more common than their brown relatives. They are voracious predators and because of this have been used successfully for biological control of agricultural pests (what specifically?). They typically live in open grassland areas and prey on plant pests such as aphids and scale insects. Coal Oil Point is home to one species of green lacewings.
Ants, Wasps, Bees, Sawflies
Hymenoptera is of the most diverse order of insects. Its members include ants, bees, sawflies, however tiny parasitic wasps account for most of the diversity.
at least 100,000 spp (G&C), 105,000 spp(P)