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Common spangle gall, Uden, Netherlands A few weeks ago, Henriette and I did a short hike in a local forest and were shocked by what this year&#039;s summer had done to it. We&#039;ve faced the hottest and most dry summer in 3 centuries. The forest was completely dried out, and we felt like aliens in our otherwise so cool, wet and moderate country. The whole place looked like a single spark of fire would destroy it entirely.<br />
<br />
Not really finding anything to photograph for a while, my otherwise awful memory reminded me to check something. I had been inspired by Christine Young&#039;s work on describing gall wasps. Before that, I really didn&#039;t know they were a thing. I simply walked past them for years without any awareness of their existence, in full ignorance. <br />
<br />
My rare moment of clarity triggered a lazy attempt (it really was hot) to check some leaves, so here you go, my first ever gall wasp observation. A new hidden layer of life discovered, thank you @Christine. <br />
<br />
Closeup:<br />
<figure class="photo"><a href="https://www.jungledragon.com/image/66617/common_spangle_gall_-_closeup_uden_netherlands.html" title="Common spangle gall - closeup, Uden, Netherlands"><img src="https://s3.amazonaws.com/media.jungledragon.com/images/2/66617_thumb.jpg?AWSAccessKeyId=05GMT0V3GWVNE7GGM1R2&Expires=1576713610&Signature=xQgjlZViJChMsTgG9hp5RntVnyQ%3D" width="200" height="192" alt="Common spangle gall - closeup, Uden, Netherlands A few weeks ago, Henriette and I did a short hike in a local forest and were shocked by what this year&#039;s summer had done to it. We&#039;ve faced the hottest and most dry summer in 3 centuries. The forest was completely dried out, and we felt like aliens in our otherwise so cool, wet and moderate country. The whole place looked like a single spark of fire would destroy it entirely.<br />
<br />
Not really finding anything to photogragh for a while, my otherwise awful memory reminded me to check something. I had been inspired by Christine Young&#039;s work on describing gall wasps. Before that, I really didn&#039;t know they were a thing. I simply walked past them for years without any awareness of their existence, in full ignorance. <br />
<br />
My rare moment of clarity triggered a lazy attempt (it really was hot) to check some leaves, so here you go, my first ever gall wasp observation. A new hidden layer of life discovered, thank you @Christine. <br />
<br />
Closeup:<br />
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/66616/common_spangle_gall_uden_netherlands.html Common spangle gall,Europe,Netherlands,Neuroterus quercusbaccarum,Uden,World" /></a></figure> Europe,Netherlands,Neuroterus quercusbaccarum,Uden,World Click/tap to enlarge PromotedSpecies introCountry intro

Common spangle gall, Uden, Netherlands

A few weeks ago, Henriette and I did a short hike in a local forest and were shocked by what this year's summer had done to it. We've faced the hottest and most dry summer in 3 centuries. The forest was completely dried out, and we felt like aliens in our otherwise so cool, wet and moderate country. The whole place looked like a single spark of fire would destroy it entirely.

Not really finding anything to photograph for a while, my otherwise awful memory reminded me to check something. I had been inspired by Christine Young's work on describing gall wasps. Before that, I really didn't know they were a thing. I simply walked past them for years without any awareness of their existence, in full ignorance.

My rare moment of clarity triggered a lazy attempt (it really was hot) to check some leaves, so here you go, my first ever gall wasp observation. A new hidden layer of life discovered, thank you @Christine.

Closeup:

Common spangle gall - closeup, Uden, Netherlands A few weeks ago, Henriette and I did a short hike in a local forest and were shocked by what this year's summer had done to it. We've faced the hottest and most dry summer in 3 centuries. The forest was completely dried out, and we felt like aliens in our otherwise so cool, wet and moderate country. The whole place looked like a single spark of fire would destroy it entirely.<br />
<br />
Not really finding anything to photogragh for a while, my otherwise awful memory reminded me to check something. I had been inspired by Christine Young's work on describing gall wasps. Before that, I really didn't know they were a thing. I simply walked past them for years without any awareness of their existence, in full ignorance. <br />
<br />
My rare moment of clarity triggered a lazy attempt (it really was hot) to check some leaves, so here you go, my first ever gall wasp observation. A new hidden layer of life discovered, thank you @Christine. <br />
<br />
Closeup:<br />
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/66616/common_spangle_gall_uden_netherlands.html Common spangle gall,Europe,Netherlands,Neuroterus quercusbaccarum,Uden,World

    comments (8)

  1. Whoa, that is awesome! Great find :) Posted one year ago
    1. You still have to read the description, it's dedicated to you! Posted one year ago
      1. Woohoo, awesome! Glad to have encouraged you to notice the tiny details ;). The variety of galls is astounding! Posted one year ago
        1. Yes it is, I've read that just this species of oak can have over 50 different species on them. Here's a thumbnail overview of some occurring in the Netherlands:

          https://people.zeelandnet.nl/grada/gallen/

          Scanning this list, I think the one I found is relatively attractive to look at.
          Posted one year ago
          1. Wow! Posted one year ago
  2. Absolutely stunning! Posted one year ago
  3. From today's JungleDragon Facebook slideshow:
    "Plant galls are abnormal outgrowths on plant tissues which result from injury, irritation, or stimulation of plant cells via mechanical damage or the injection of chemicals by an invading organism. While insects are the primary culprits, several galls are caused by bacterial, fungal, and nematode infections. They take on a variety of unusual shapes and colors and can be found on the leaves, flowers, roots, and stems of plants. These bizarre growths typically are not harmful to their hosts and only cause cosmetic defects. There are some exceptions to this as some gall species on wheat, roses, pears, and grapes are rather detrimental to plant health.

    The majority of gall-forming insects are wasps, flies, or aphids, however, there are a plethora of others like midges, aphids, scale insects, psyllids, and weevils. Cynipid wasps make up the largest group with over a whopping 1400 species. These insects often specialize on one particular host plant, while a single plant may harbor multiple species. They can be differentiated by the color and morphology of the gall--and the host plant on which they occur.

    Gall-forming insects are master plant manipulators, hijacking the plant's meristematic tissues and triggering rapid cell division and growth during oviposition or larval feeding (usually through the release of a chemical secretion or enzyme). This results in the formation of a gall, the perfect microhabitat for for insect larvae. Larvae take full advantage of these little "luxury hotels", feeding on plant tissues and avoiding predation and harsh weather conditions until they are ready to emerge as adults."
    Posted 9 months ago
    1. A most beautiful post, Lisa! Galls are so underappreciated and unknown. If it wasn't for some examples shared here I still would walk by them in full ignorance. Great topic to write and educate about, well done! Posted 9 months ago

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The common spangle gall on the underside of leaves and the currant gall on the male catkins or occasionally the leaves, develop as chemically induced distortions on pedunculate oak , or sessile oak trees, caused by the cynipid wasp ''Neuroterus quercusbaccarum'' which has both agamic and bisexual generations.

Previous names or synonyms for this species are ''Neuroterus baccarum'', ''N. lenticularis'', ''N. malpighii'', ''Cynips lenticularis'', ''C. quercus-baccarum'', ''Spathegaster baccarum,.. more

Species identified by Ferdy Christant
View Ferdy Christant's profile

By Ferdy Christant

All rights reserved
Uploaded Sep 20, 2018. Captured Aug 4, 2018 13:43.
  • NIKON D850
  • f/16.0
  • 1/60s
  • ISO64
  • 105mm