These wasps are 2-5 mm long, and have a black or brown body and a narrow thorax; the antennae are moderately long, and have 12 or 13 segments. The front femora are thickened in the middle, and the abdomen has seven or eight visible segments. Females of many species are wingless and resemble ants; the males are winged. Some species are parthenogenetic, and the unfertilized eggs produce males. Many species are parasites of larvae of household pests, such as wood-infesting beetles and ants, and stored-grain beetles and moths. A number of species in the genus Sclerodermus are parasitic on the larvae of Cerambycidae. Species in the large genus Pseudobrachium are parasites ofants, and P. mandibulare is associated with carpen-terants (Camponotus). Species inCephalonomiaandNeoscleroderma are parasites of stored-grain beetles; and Laelius trogodermatis is a parasite of dermestid beetle larvae. Three genera, Cephalonomia, Sclerodermus, and Epyris, have species that are reported to sting people and sometimes cause a severe reaction, including respiratory problems, nausea, and headaches. Many species are cosmopolitan.

Parasitic grain wasps, Cephalonomia gallicola, C. watersoni, C. benoiti Adults are about 1.6 mm long, and the body is brown to brownish black. The tarsi are yellowish brown to brown, and the wings are clear. C. watersoni is a cosmopolitan parasite of the rusty grain beetle (Cryptolestesferrugineus). C. gal-licola is probably cosmopolitan and parasitizes larvae of several species of stored-food beetles. C. benoiti and C. gallicola occur and sting people indoors.

Bethylid wasps, Epyris californicus, Epyris spp. Adults are about 5 mm long and the body is black. It is believed to parasitize the larvae of tenebrionid (Tenebrionidae) beetles. There are many species of Epyris, and some are known to inflict a severe sting when brushed or crushed by clothing or sheets against the skin. This species is reported from northern California, but it may occur in neighboring states.

Dermestid wasp, Laeliustrogodermatis Adults are about4 mm long, with a black body and dusky wings. Full-grown larvae are about 4 mm long and yellowish white. The adult female searches for dermestid larvae and oviposits 1-6 eggs on a larva after first stinging it several times. Eggs hatch in about 2 days and larval developmentis complete in 10-14 days. Silken cocoons are spun outside the skin of the dermestid larva. The prepupal stage is about 10 days, and the pupal period is 8-10 days. Females may lay unfertilized eggs, which produce males.

Scleroderma wasps, sclerodermus domesticus, S. abdominalis

Adults are 3.5-4 mm long and the body is brown. The antennae have 13 segments, and the mandibles have three teeth. Females of these species are known to sting people. Besides the acute pain associated with the sting, there are small and local patches ofirritated skin, and these patches are associated with intense itching.

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