SK9923 : Rose bedeguar gall

taken 3 years ago, near to Swayfield, Lincolnshire, Great Britain

Rose bedeguar gall
Rose bedeguar gall
The brightly coloured parasitic growth alsoknown as "Robin's pin-cushion" or "moss gall" is induced by a infestation of the wasp Diplolepis rosae. The gall may contain several chambers each containing a wasp grub. Only hedgerow roses are infected by this sort of gall wasp, which lays its eggs in terminal leaf buds before they open.

Like many gall wasps, reproduction is asexual, the females produce eggs parthenogenically. Unlike other gall wasps, however, there is no alternation with a sexual generation, and the stage shown here may occasionally throw up a male wasp. Recent research suggests that it is infection of the wasps with a bacterium of the Wolbachia group which causes this asexual reproduction. If the bacterium is suppressed by drugs then normal sexual dimorphism and reproduction occurs.

A severe infestation of the galls would suggest a plant struggling because it is short of water, or is otherwise under stress. Here they occurred singly and widely spaced, suggesting that the damage caused by mechanical hedging was likely responsible. But this has been a very dry summer and autumn, so that too may account for the infection taking hold.
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SK9923, 31 images   (more nearby )
Photographer
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Date Taken
Thursday, 25 September, 2014   (more nearby)
Submitted
Thursday, 25 September, 2014
Geographical Context
Lowlands  Wild Animals, Plants and Mushrooms 
Primary Subject of Photo
Plant 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SK 9956 2320 [10m precision]
WGS84: 52:47.8312N 0:31.4895W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SK 9956 2320
View Direction
North-northwest (about 337 degrees)
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Other Tags
Dog Rose  Wasp Gall 

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