An analysis of the superparasitic behaviour and host discrimination of chaicid wasps (Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea)
Superparasitism is frequently met with in chalcids. The actual mechanism of suppression of the supernumerary individuals is by mutual combat though exceptions to this general rule may also be seen rarely. Many chalcids are known to discriminate between parasitised and healthy hosts. It is an interesting phenomenon that superparasitism occurs even when a female is capable of discriminating parasitised and unparasitised hosts. Several factors play prominent roles in causing superparasitism and the avoidance of superparasitism by a chaicid is the result of maximisation of its reproductive success.