Landcare Research - Manaaki Whenua

Landcare-Research -Manaaki Whenua

ICHNEUMONIDAE: : Certonotus Kriechbaumer 1889


Certonotus is easily recognised because of its large size, 2-3cm, very long ovipositor and colourful metasoma.

Characteristics of Certonotus include: 1. Body size >20mm; 2. Position of spiracle on T1 of metasoma is at, close to, or before centre; 3. Shape of aerolet in forewing is triangulate; 4. Colour of face is not all black; 5. Metasoma is not distinctly compressed; 6. Size of ocelli are small; 7. Length of antennae is as long, or longer than body; 8. Length of ovipositor very long - as long, or longer than body; 9. Wings present; 10. Colour of wings hyaline (clear); 11. Sternaulus absent; 12. Shape of face in lateral view flat or only weakly bulging; 13. Sternite on T1 (viewed laterally) not extending past spiracle; 14. Shape of T1 (viewed laterally) evenly curved; 15. Number of teeth in mandibles: 2; 16. Metasoma with colourful spots ; 17. Length of T1 vs T2 subequal in length; 18. Sculpture on mesoscutum with transverse striations (wrinkles); 19. Width of T1 (viewed dorsally) of uniform width (slightly widening posteriorly); 20. Glymma on T1 absent; 21. Sculpture on metasoma smooth with a glossy appearance (highly polished, no punctures); 22. Propodeum very short (not reaching beyond coxal insertion).

Similarity to Other Taxa

Certonotus is easily recognised because of its large size, 2-3cm, very long ovipositor and colourful metasoma. Certonotus can only be confused with an introduced biocontrol agent, Megarhyssa . However, Certonotus has distinct yellow spots on top of the metasoma, whereas Megarhyssa has these spots on the sides of the metasoma.

Distribution in NZ

North Island: AK, TK, WI, WN. South Island: NN, NC, BR, SC, WD, FD, SI, SL.

Species in NZ

One endemic species: Certonotus fractinervis (Vollenhoven 1873).

Biology & hosts

Certonotus is widespread in New Zealand but naturally uncommon. Its host is the elephant weevil Rhyncodes ursus (Curculionidae) (Lindsay 1925, Hudson 1927).

Sources of information

Gauld ID. 1984. An Introduction to the Ichneumonidae of Australia. London, British Museum (Natural History). 413 p.
Hudson GV. 1927. The giant ichneumon-fly, Rhyssa fractinervis Voll. A further contribution towards its life history. New Zealand Journal of Science and Technology 9: 118.
Lindsay S. 1925. The giant ichneumon-fly Rhyssa fractinervis Voll. New Zealand Journal of Science and Technology 8: 31-32.
Parrott AW 1952. New Zealand Ichneumonidae. II. Tribe Echthromorphini (Pimplinae). Transactions of the Royal Society of New Zealand (Zoology) 80: 155-170.
Valentine EW & Walker AK. 1991. Annotated Catalogue of New Zealand Hymenoptera. DSIR Plant Protection Report 4. General Printing Services, 84 pp.


Ward DF & Schnitzler FR. 2013. Ichneumonidae of New Zealand. Genus Certonotus
Accessed: 12 July 2020


v1.0. Ward DF & Schnitzler FR. 2013