Practical Use Of Braconid Wasps For Control Of The Common Furniture Beetle (Coleoptera: Anobiidae)
  Key Words  
  Anobium punctatum, Spathius exarator, castle, museum pests, integrated wood protection
  Stephan Biebl and Judith Auer
  This paper will show the practical use of a braconid wasp species (Spathius exarator) as a biological control method for Anobium. punctatum. The parasitic wasp parasitizes its host by piercing its ovipositor directly through the wood surface followed by oviposition onto the furniture beetle larva. Adult wasps emerge through a 0.5 mm wide hole, which can be distinguished from the 2 mm wide hole of A. punctatum. With the consultancy of an official expert for wood protection, the infestation of A. punctatum and the use of the braconid wasp S. exarator were controlled from 2014 till 2016 in a castle church (Schlo▀kirche Ellingen). Success was based on the count of new exit holes of wasps and furniture beetles on defined areas. The results of the three-year treatment period with the braconid wasp species showed improvement with a decrease of up to 80% emerging furniture beetles on monitored areas. The results of another representative chapel N., treated with S. exarator for two years, demonstrated a decrease of up to 100% emerging beetles with a slight rerise of A. punctatum activity after five years. These results show the promising state of affairs of biological control with the host-specific braconid wasp for A. punctatum infested objects. However, more practical experience will be required to optimise the treatment and rate of success. Furthermore, supportively integrated wood protection treatments, like the use of Anoxia, may be used to reduce partial tight infestations on removable objects.