Sputnik Gall Wasp - Diplolepis nervosa

Alternative names
Sputnik Gall

The cynipid wasp Diplolepis nervosa causes spiked 'sputnik' galls on the petioles, midrib or leaf blades of wild roses, usually underside but occasionally on the upper surface. 

It also forms smooth pea-galls, but these cannot be distinguished from those of Diplolepis eglanteriae.

Similar Species

Diplolepis eglanteriae

Identification difficulty

Gall  Adult


Anywhere that the host Dog-rose plant is found.

When to see it

The adult insects emerge from their galls in spring.

Life History

Each gall is, in effect, a hollow, fleshy nursery chamber for a small white grub, the larva of the Diplolepis nervosa gall wasp, which feeds on the chamber wall. The galls appear to detach from the leaves before leaf fall and will lie in the leaf litter until the grub pupates and emerges as the small adult wasp, only about 4 mm long.

UK Status

Quite common and widespread in Britain.

VC55 Status

Fairly common in Leicestershire and Rutland.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map

Species profile

Species group:
Bees, Wasps, Ants
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
07/08/2005 (Nicholls, David)
Last record:
27/09/2023 (lemmon, roy)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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