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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Cladus: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Cladus: Holozoa
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Protostomia
Cladus: Ecdysozoa
Cladus: Panarthropoda
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Hexapoda
Classis: Insecta
Cladus: Dicondylia
Subclassis: Pterygota
Cladus: Metapterygota
Infraclassis: Neoptera
Cladus: Eumetabola
Cladus: Endopterygota
Superordo: Hymenopterida
Ordo: Hymenoptera
Subordo: Apocrita
Superfamilia: Mymarommatoidea

Familia: Mymarommatidae
Genera (5): Mymaromella – Mymaromma – Zealaromma – †Archaeromma – †Palaeomymar

[source: UCD (accessed 2011-05-19)


Engel, M.S.; Grimaldi, D.A. 2007: New false fairy wasps in Cretaceous amber from New Jersey and Myanmar (Hymenoptera: Mymarommatoidea). Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science, 110: 159–168.
Gibson, G.A.P., Read, J. & Huber, J.T. 2007. Diversity, classification and higher relationships of Mymarommatoidea (Hymenoptera). Journal of Hymenoptera research 16(1): 51–146. BHL Reference page.
Huber, J.T. 2005: The gender and derivation of genus-group names in Mymaridae and Mymarommatidae (Hymenoptera). Acta Societatis Zoologicae Bohemicae, 69: 167–183. ISSN: 1211-376X PDF

The Mymarommatidae, sometimes referred to as False fairy wasps. are a very small family of microscopic parasitic wasps. Only about half of the known species are living taxa (the others are fossils), but they are known from all parts of the world.[1] Undoubtedly, many more await discovery, as they are easily overlooked and difficult to study due to their extremely small size (most have an overall length of around 0.3 mm).

Virtually nothing is known about the biology of these insects, but because of their size, and simple ovipositors, entomologists assume they are idiobiont parasitoids on the eggs of various insects. Psocoptera had been suggested as likely hosts based on circumstantial evidence,[2] and this was confirmed in 2022.[3] They were originally treated as an aberrant subfamily of the chalcidoid family Mymaridae (fairyflies), but because of morphological differences, are now usually placed in their own superfamily, Mymarommatoidea with a number of extinct families, and their similarity to Mymaridae is thought to be a result of parallel evolution. Mymarommatids are distinguished by the presence of a pleated (folded) membrane connecting the front and back halves of the head extending from the mandible to the top of the head, which is presumably expanded by muscle or hydrostatic pressure, likely to aid in breaking open the walls of the egg capsule. They also possess a two-segmented metasomal petiole, otherwise unknown in Hymenoptera other than ants. Specimens are often found in leaf litter and are rare, but occasionally appear in significant numbers.

As taxonomists have examined this group more closely, they have become less certain about which other group of wasps represents the nearest living relatives of the Mymarommatidae. In recent years, it has been proposed that the nearest relatives of Mymarommatoidea are the extinct Serphitoidea, including the family Serphitidae, and therefore claim the Mymarommatidae are essentially "living fossils".

†Palaeomymar is known from a single species (P. succini Meunier) from Eocene aged Baltic amber.

†Archaeromma is known from 10 species spread across Laurasia during the Cretaceous dating from the Albian to the Campanian.[4]

Mymaromma has 11 described extant species.[5][3]

Mymaromella has 6 described extant species.[6] Another species of Mymaromella, M. duerrenfeldi, is known from Miocene amber in Sicily.[7]

Zealaromma has two extant species: Z. insulare and Z. valentinei. Both species are known from New Zealand.[1]

Gibson, G.A.P.; Read, J.; Huber, J.T. (2007) Diversity, classification and higher relationships of Mymarommatoidea (Hymenoptera).Journal of Hymenoptera Research 16: 51–146
Huber, John T.; Gibson, Gary A. P.; Bauer, Leah S.; Liu, Houping; Gates, Michael (2008). "The genus Mymaromella (Hymenoptera: Mymarommatidae) in North America, with a key to described extant species". Journal of Hymenoptera Research. 17 (2): 175–194.
Honsberger DN, Huber JT, Wright MG (2022) A new Mymaromma sp. (Mymarommatoidea, Mymarommatidae) in Hawai‘i and first host record for the superfamily. Journal of Hymenoptera Research 89: 73-87.
"Fossilworks: Archaeromma". Retrieved 17 December 2021.
[1] Universal Chalcidoidea Database - Mymaromma - Accessed 27 Jan 2021
[2] Universal Chalcidoidea Database - Mymaromella - Accessed 27 Jan 2021
T. Schlüter and R. Kohring. 1990. Die zwergwespengattung Palaeomymar (Hymenoptera: Proctotrupoidea: Serphitidae) aus dem mio/pliozänen Simetit Siziliens. Berliner Geowissenschaftliche Abhandlungen, Reihe A 124:115-121

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