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Rhopalosomatidae keys

Keys to rhopalosomatid wasps

(Life: Kingdom: Metazoa (animals); Phylum: Arthropoda; Class: Hexapoda; Order: Hymenoptera; Superfamily: Vespoidea; Family: Rhopalosomatidae)

ClassificationKeys home page

*** NB Chrome Version 42 (released April 2015) removed the Netscape Plugin API (NPAPI) architecture that Java requires to function. This means that the Lucid keys will not load in Google Chrome. Please use an alternative browser (IE, FireFox, or Safari on Mac OS X) to load the Lucid keys.

Users can choose between two different key formats depending on their personal preference. Lucid Phoenix keys are interactive keys that are still dichotomous and a choice needs to be made at each key couplet to continue.  For more information concerning Lucid keys visit www.lucidcentral.org.

Key to Afrotropical genera and species of Rhopalosomatidae. Generated from Lohrmann, 2011; Lohrmann & Ohl, 2007 & Townes, 1977.

Standard Dichotomous key



Key to Australian species of Olixon. Generated from Krogmann et al., 2009.

Standard Dichotomous key


System requirements

Java Runtime Environment (JRE) must be installed. To check if you have Java installed on your system type "Java -version" in a Command prompt (Windows) or Terminal console (Mac, Unix).

If you receive an unknown command error message or your Java build number is not the latest version then re-install the latest edition of JRE, which can be found at:  http://java.com/en/download/index.jsp


Pop-up blockers on your browser need to be turned off to access character images and species pages (fact sheets) from within the key environment.


What to do if your Java security settings prevent the key from opening. Go to the programs folder on your computer; open the Java Folder; click on Configure Java tab, which will open the Java Control Panel; click on the Security tab; under Exception site list click on Edit site list and add the WaspWeb url: http://www.waspweb.org


If you are still having problems opening the keys visit the Java page: How do I enable Java in my web browser? and follow the instructions for the browser you are using.


Krogmann, L., Austin, A.D. & Naumann, I.D. 2009. Systematics and biogeography of Australian rhopalosomatid wasps (Hymenoptera: Rhopalosomatidae) with a global synopsis of the enigmatic genus Olixon Cameron. Systematic Entomology 34: 222–251.

Lohrmann, V. 2011. A revision of the Paniscomima of the African Subregion with the description of two new species from Malawi and Tanzania (Hymenoptera, Rhopalosomatidae). Zoosyst. Evol. 87 (2): 371–378. DOI 10.1002/zoos.201100014.

Lohrmann, V. & Ohl, M. 2007. The wasp genus Olixon Cameron in Madagascar: first record and description of two new species (Hymenoptera: Rhopalosomatidae). Zootaxa 1465: 39-46.

Townes, H. 1977. A revision of the Rhopalosomatidae (Hymenoptera). Contributions of the Entomological Institute 15: 1-34.


Photographs included in the keys © Simon van Noort (Iziko Museums of South Africa) or © Volker Lohrmann (Museum für Naturkunde, Humboldt-Universität Berlin) or © Lars Krogmann (State Museum of Natural History, Stuttgart).

Web author Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)


Citation: van Noort, S. 2019. WaspWeb: Hymenoptera of the Afrotropical region. URL: www.waspweb.org (accessed on <day/month/year>).

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