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Downy Rose (Rosa tomentosa) and Gall


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The Downy Rose grows in hedgerows and grassland. Like many wild roses it is frequently attacked by the gall-wasp -Diplolepis rosae. Gall wasps are small dark-coloured insects about 4mm long. The wasp punctures the plant and lays its eggs. The galls are formed by a reaction of the cells of the plant to the presence of the larva, although the exact reactions in the host plant are little understood. The galls are a mass of filaments within which are found a number of sealed chambers enclosing larvae. The larvae feed on the gall tissue. On downy roses such galls are bright red and known as 'robin's pin-cushions'. Picture taken at Old Warden Bedfordshire 27th August 2006.

28th Aug 2006 by Diane Earl

Biology, Science

Key Stages:
Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4, Key Stage 4+

plant insect gall wildlife flower

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