Pamphiliidae

Taxonomy

Superfamily: Pamphilioidea
Family: Pamphiliidae
Family common name: web-spinning and leaf-rolling sawflies
Subfamilies: Cephalciinae, Pamphiliinae

Background

The family Pamphiliidae are known for larval behaviors like eating gregariously in large webs or rolling up leaves. They have a fairly broad host range and are relatively species-rich in the North American Symphyta. Pamphiliidae are recognized by the large head and thin seta-like antennae (Smith and Middlekauff 1987). Many have bright colors or distinctive markings (Taeger et al. 2010).

Diversity

Pamphiliidae includes 13 genera and 297 species worldwide. About 5 genera and 73 species are Nearctic in distribution (Taeger et al. 2018).

North American genera

Acantholyda
Cephalcia
Neurotoma
Onycholyda
Pamphilius

Diagnostic characteristics

Host associations

In North America, Pamphiliidae feeds on coniferous trees in the family Pinaceae, and on angiosperm trees in the families Rosaceae, Salicaceae, and Fagaceae (Smith and Middlekauff 1987).

May be confused with

Pamphiliidae can be distinguished from other families by the thin, thread-like antennae and the folded tergites 2–5 (Goulet 1992).

Life history

Pamphiliidae sawflies oviposit on leaves or needles of the host plant. Larvae feed externally on foliage, but generally have either the habit of creating intricate nests of silk, frass, and leaf matter, or feeding inside a rolled-up leaf. Some economic pests are included in this family (Smith and Middlekauff 1987).

Distribution

World: This family’s range extends through North America, Europe, Asia, and South America (Taeger et al. 2010, GBIF).

North America: Pamphiliidae occurs throughout the United States and Canada, south into Mexico (Smith and Middlekauff 1987).

Cephalcia sp. female lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Cephalcia sp. female lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Neurotoma fasciata male lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Neurotoma fasciata male lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Acantholyda sp. female lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Acantholyda sp. female lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Onycholyda sp. female lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA

Onycholyda sp. female lateral habitus; photo by J. Orr, WSDA