Dr Gavin Broad

Gavin Broad
  • Senior Curator, Hymenoptera
  • Life Sciences department
  • Insects
Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road


Employment history

2006 – present

Curator (now Senior Curator) in Entomology department at the Natural History Museum.  Curatorial responsibilty for part of the Hymenoptera collections (Ichneumonoidea and Vespoideadae, minus Formicidae).

2003 – 2006

Coordinator of zoological data and research at the Biological Records Centre, NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology at Monks Wood.  A position jointly and equally funded by the JNCC (Joint Nature Conservation Committee) and NERC (Natural Environment Research Council).

2001 - 2003

Postgraduate research assistant at Imperial College London on a three year NERC (Natural Environmental Research Council) grant awarded to Donald Quicke, entitled Ecology and physiology of trace metal utilisation in tritrophic systems.

Subject editor (Ichneumonoidea systematics), Journal of Hymenoptera Research

The journal of the International Society of Hymenopterists

Please submit papers to the editor in chief, Stefan Schmidt, via the address on the society website.  At the moment, publication in the journal is restricted to members of ISH but, if you are not a member, the rates are very reasonable and you should join now!

Subject editor (Ichneumonidae), ZooKeys

ZooKeys is an open-access, rapid publication, systematic biology journal.

Qualifications and awards

Distinguished Service Award from the International Society of Hymenopterists 2010

Imperial College London, Department of Biology and Centre for Population Biology 1997 - 2001

PhD passed in August 2001, 'Phylogenetic Analysis of Host Utilisation Patterns in Parasitoid Hymenoptera'

The University of Sheffield 1994 - 1997

Zoology BSc.



I'm a senior curator with responsibility for two major groups of Hymenoptera: the Ichneumonoidea and Vespoidea (minus Formicidae, ants).  The Natural History Museum houses one of the largest collections of Hymenoptera in the world with the collections of Ichneumonoidea and Vespoidea very species-rich and drawn from across the globe.  My current curatorial focus is on Ichneumonoidea, reflected in the text here, but the collection of Vespoidea (particularly Polistinae, Vespinae and Eumeninae of the Vespidae) is very rich, with large numbers of types and a significant collection of wasp nests.  This part of the collection will be more completely documented in the near future.


Megascolia procer


Scale of the collection

We house probably the largest single collection of Ichneumonoidea types (a little over 3,000 Braconidae and 2,700 Ichneumonidae putative primary types) and over 15,300 species (c.10,000 Ichneumonidae, 5,300 Braconidae).  Other particularly significant collections of Ichneumonoidea include the Ford collection of Microgastrinae reared from Lepidoptera, North-west European ichneumonoids (particularly from Britain and Sweden) and the Costa Rican Ichneumonidae, amassed by Ian Gauld and co-workers. 

Collection development

We are continually increasing the collection through targeted fieldwork, through donations, exchanges and, probably most importantly, through active taxonomic work on the collections by researchers around the world.  As well as the catalogued species, we have large numbers of unidentified Ichneumonoidea, usually sorted to subfamily or genus, including many undescribed species.  As the collection is recurated, I am assembling basic data on the unidentified specimens and the countries represented by these, which may be of interest to taxonomists; a preliminary spreadsheet for some groups of Ichneumonidae and Braconidae can be found here.

Current curatorial projects

The current emphasis is on upgrading the collection, re-housing specimens in unit trays, bringing together specimens from the old 'accessions' material and the main collection, and updating the collection database.  The collections of Pimplinae and Netelia (both Ichneumonidae) and the cyclostome Braconidae are mid-way through recuration, involving the recognition of many species new to the collection (which includes a number of significant recent donations from researchers in various countries) and an overhaul of the layout of the collection to better reflect modern taxonomy.  Other projects include an assessment of the type status of various putative braconid types and the incorporation of a large backlog of named vespoids (mainly Mutillidae, Scoliidae and Tiphiidae) in the collection.  The Hymenoptera team will also be spending a good deal of time on incorporating the large Hymenoptera collection of Karl-Johan Hedqvist, recently purchased by the museum.


Ophion drawer recurated


Rodrigama gamezi

Research Interests

Taxonomy, phylogeny and ecology of parasitoid wasps of the family Ichneumonidae.

Phylogeny of Perilissini

From 2008-9, working on a PEET grant from NSF, awarded to Prof. Robert Wharton, Texas A&M.  We are re-evaluating the generic classification and phylogeny of the Perilissini, a tribe of Ichneumonidae (subfamily Ctenopelmatinae), mostly parasitoids of sawflies.

Taxonomy of Netelia and Ophioninae

In collaboration with Mark Shaw, we are producing papers on these two groups of nocturnal Ichneumonidae, covering their taxonomy and biology, the latter based mainly on the excellent collections of reared specimems in Edinburgh (National Museums of Scotland).  See also the 'nocturnal recording scheme' tab.

Identification key to British and Irish subfamilies of Ichneumonidae

This key to ichneumonid subfamilies is a draft version so any constructive criticism will be appreciated.

Checklist of British and Irish Hymenoptera

The most recent British and Irish checklist was published in 1978 and so is now badly out of date.  The updated checklist is nearing completion and drafts for several families are available here.  Any comments or criticism are welcome.

Checklist of British and Irish Braconidae PDF (708.2 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Ichneumonidae PDF (1.8 MB)

Checklist of British and Irish Sawflies PDF (430.7 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Ceraphronoidea PDF (81.8 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Charipinae PDF (46.3 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Evanioidea PDF (37.7 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Trigonalyoidea PDF (21.1 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Chalcididae PDF (74.0 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Eucharitidae PDF (36.2 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Eulophidae PDF (221.6 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Eupelmidae PDF (70.9 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Eurytomidae PDF (89.1 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Ormyridae PDF (27.3 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Perilampidae PDF (44.9 KB)

Checklist of British and Irish Mymarommatoidea PDF (14.2 KB)


PhD Student 

Tim Cockerill recently completed his PhD, a CASE studentship between Cambridge University and the Natural History Museum.  Tim's project, co-supervised by William Foster (Cambridge), involved looking at the parasitoids and predators of oil-palm pest species in relation to the proximity of primary forest.  His fieldwork was carried out in Sabah, Malaysia.

Useful links

The Hymenoptera Glossary is a very useful resource from the Hymenoptera Anatomy Ontology project.

Monographs published by Agriculture & Agriculture Canada are now available online. 

Entomological Society of Canada These include the very useful and out of print Goulet, H. & Huber, J., 1993, Hymenoptera of the world: an identification guide to families”. 

Recording Scheme

Nocturnal Ichneumonoidea Recording Scheme

This recording scheme focuses on mapping the distributions of British and Irish nocturnal ichneumonoids.  I welcome any light-trapped specimens of Ichneumonidae and Braconidae, but particularly those species that are testaceous/reddish, such as the genera Ophion, Netelia, Absyrtus, Homolobus, Zele, amongst others.  Ophion obscuratus, a common, nocturnal species, is shown below.

Very little is known about the distribution or abundance of parasitoid wasps.  Hopefully this recording scheme will be a step towards generating some useful data that will allow us to measure change, in distribution and abundance, over time.  In collaboration with Mark Shaw, a dataset relating to the British Netelia fauna will be made available on the NBN Gateway, to coincide with a taxonomic revision of the British species which is nearing completion.  A draft key to genera and some species of British nocturnal ichneumonids can be found here: draft key to nocturnal ichneumonoids PDF (4.8 MB)

If you have specimens of nocturnal ichneumonoids they will be gratefully received at the address given on this CV.  Please do email in advance.  Specimens of Ophion or Netelia from elsewhere in Europe would also be very gratefully received.   

Ophion obscuratus


It is a great pleasure to work with artists who take inspiration from the museum’s collections. Have a look at the wonderful work of Gemma Anderson and Tessa Farmer.

Both Gemma and Tessa use the collections and natural history to inform their work, but in very different ways. Tessa’s An Insidious Intrusion’ video was one of the results of her residency at the museum. Gemma’s beautiful etchings assemble specimens from across our collections, re-curated on the basis of isomorphology, i.e. shared symmetries or body forms, rather than taxonomy.

Gemma Anderson

Gemma Anderson at work in the Darwin Centre, with specimens from across the collections.

Gemma Anderson art

Completed isomorphology engraving by Gemma Anderson.

Tessa Farmer chrysis

Art by Tessa Farmer.

Tessa Farmer ant-fairy hybrid

Art by Tessa Farmer.

Tessa Farmer bumblebee

Art by Tessa Farmer.



Audit of non-native species in England PDF (531.5 KB)

  • Barthélémy, C and BROAD, G R ( 2012 ) A new species of Hadrocryptus (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae, Cryptinae), with the first account of the biology for the genus Journal of Hymenoptera Research 24 : 47-57 . 10.3897/JHR.24.1888
  • Pham , N T, BROAD, G R and Zwakhals, C J ( 2012 ) First record of the genus Dolichomitus Smith (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae) from Vietnam, with description of one new species Zootaxa 3519 : 77-84 .
  • Quicke, D L J, BROAD, G R, Areekul Butcher, B ( 2012 ) First host record for the Palaeotropical braconine wasp genus Cassidibracon Quicke (Hymenoptera, Braconidae) with the description of a new species from India Journal of Hymenoptera Research 28 : 135-141 . 10.3897/JHR.28.3192
  • Quicke, D L J, Smith, M A, Janzen, D H, Hallwachs, W, Fernández-Triana, J, Laurenne, N M, Zaldívar-Riverón, A, Shaw, M R, BROAD, G R, Klopfstein, S, Shaw, S R, Hrcek, J, Hebert, P D N, Miller, S E, Rodriguez, J J, Whitfield, J B, Sharkey, M J, Sharanowski, B J, Jussila, R, Gauld, I D, Chesters, D and Vogler, A P ( 2012 ) Utility of the DNA barcoding gene fragment for parasitic wasp phylogeny (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonoidea): data release and new measure of taxonomic congruence Ecology Resources 2012 : 10 pp. . 10.1111/j.1755-0998.2012.03143.x
  • Seltmann, K, Yoder, M J, Mikó, I, Forshage, M, Bertone, M A, Agosti, D, Austin, A D, Balhoff, J P, Borowiec, M L, Brady, S G, BROAD, G R, Brothers, D J, Burks, R A, Buffington, M L, Campbell, H M, Dew, K J, Ernst, A F, Fernández-Triana, J L, Gates, M W, Gibson, G A P, Jennings, J T, Johnson, N F, Karlsson, D, Kawada, R, Krogmann, L, Kula, R R, Mullins, P L, Ohl, M, Rasmussen, C, Ronquist, F, Schulmeister, S, Sharkey, M J, Talamas, E, Tucker, E, Vilhelmsen, L, Ward, P S, Wharton, R A, Deans, A R ( 2012 ) A hymenopterists’ guide to the Hymenoptera Anatomy Ontology: utility, clarification, and future directions Journal of Hymenoptera Research 27 : 67-88 . 10.3897/JHR.27.2961
  • Sheng, M-L, BROAD, G R and Sun, S-P ( 2012 ) A new genus and species of Collyriinae (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae) Journal of Hymenoptera Research 25 : 103-125 . 10.3897/JHR.25.2319
  • Veijalainen, A, Wahlberg, N, BROAD, G R, Erwin, T L, Longino, J T and Sääksjärvi, I E ( 2012 ) Unprecedented ichneumonid parasitoid wasp diversity in tropical forests Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B - Biological Sciences 279 : 4694-4698 . 10.1111/j.1752-4598.2012.00185.x
  • BROAD, G R, Sääksjärvi, I E, Veijalainen, A. and Notton, D G ( 2011 ) Three new genera of Banchinae (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae) from Central and South America Journal of Natural History 45 : 1311–1329 .
  • Castillo, C, Sääksjärvi, I E, Bennett, A M R and BROAD, G R ( 2011 ) First record of Acaenitinae (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae) from South America with description of a new species and a key to the world species of Arotes Gravenhorst ZooKeys 137 : 77-88 . 10.3897/zookeys.137.1788
  • Foster, W A, Snaddon, J L, Turner, E C, Fayle, T M, Cockerill, T D, Ellwood, M D F, BROAD, G R, Chung, A Y C, Eggleton, P, Khen, C V and Yusah, K M ( 2011 ) Establishing the evidence base for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function in the oil palm landscapes of South East Asia Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 366 : 3277-3291 . 10.1098/rstb.2011.0041
  • Matsumoto, R and BROAD, G R ( 2011 ) Discovery of Rodrigama Gauld in the Old World, with description of two new species (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae, Poemeniinae) Journal of Hymenoptera Research 20 : 65-75 .
  • Pham, N T, BROAD, G R and Lampe K-H ( 2011 ) Descriptions of two new species of Augerella Gupta (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae) from Vietnam [erratum to Pham et al. 2010] Zootaxa 2745 : 68 .
  • Pham, N T, BROAD, G R and Wägele, W J ( 2011 ) The genus Acropimpla Townes (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae) in Vietnam, with descriptions of three new species Zootaxa 2921 : 1-12 .
  • Pham, N T, BROAD, G R, Matsumoto, R and Wägele, J W ( 2011 ) Revision of the genus Xanthopimpla Saussure (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae) in Vietnam, with descriptions of fourteen new species Zootaxa 3056 : 1-67 .
  • Pham, N T, BROAD, G R, Matsumoto, R and Wägele, W J ( 2011 ) Two new species of the genus Chablisea Gauld et Dubois (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae) from Vietnam Biologia 66 : 1134-1139 . 10.2478/s11756-011-0117-z
  • Salisbury, A and BROAD, G R ( 2011 ) The hyperparasitoid Mesochorus lilioceriphilus (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae), an addition to the parasitoid complex of the lily beetle in Britain British Journal of Entomology and Natural History 24 : 95-99+plate 8 .
  • Sheng, M-L and BROAD, G R ( 2011 ) A new species of the genus Palpostilpnus Aubert (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae, Cryptinae) from the Oriental part of China ZooKeys 108 : 61-66 .
  • Sheng, M-L, BROAD, G R and Sun, S-P ( 2011 ) Two new species of genus Ateleute Förster (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae, Cryptinae) with a key to the Oriental species ZooKeys 141 : 53-64 . 10.3897/zookeys.141.1912
  • Veijalainen, A, BROAD, G R, Wahlberg, N, Longino, J T and Sääksjärvi, I E ( 2011 ) DNA barcoding and morphology reveal two common species in one: Pimpla molesta stat. rev. separated from P. croceipes (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae) ZooKeys 124 : 59-70 .
  • BROAD, G R ( 2010 ) Status of Batakomacrus Kolarov (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Orthocentrinae), with new generic combinations and description of a new species Zootaxa 2394 : 51-68 .
  • BROAD, G R ( 2010 ) A review of the genus Geraldus Fitton (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Banchinae), with description of a new species Journal of Natural History 44 : 1419–1425 .
  • BROAD, G R, Sääksjärvi, I E and Palacio, E ( 2010 ) A new species of Umanella Gauld (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae) from Ecuador ZooKeys 35 : 77-90 . 10.3897/zookeys.35.326
  • Palacio, E, BROAD G R, Sääksjärvi, I E and Veijalainen, A ( 2010 ) Western Amazonian Ticapimpla (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae): Four new species from Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru, with a key to species of the genus Psyche 2010 : Article ID 161595, 8 pp. . 10.1155/2010/161595
  • Pham, N T, BROAD, G R and Lampe, K-H ( 2010 ) Descriptions of two new species of Augerella Gupta (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Pimplinae) and the first record of A. orientalis (Gupta) from Vietnam Zootaxa 2654 : 17-29 .
  • Wahl, D B, Bennett, A M R, BROAD, G R, Sääksjärvi, I E, and Zuniga-Ramirez, R ( 2010 ) Obituary: Ian David Gauld 25 May 1947-12 January 2009 Journal of Hymenoptera Research 19 : 189-198 .
  • Baker, E A and BROAD, G R ( 2009 ) Five aphid parasitoids (Hymenoptera: Braconidae: Aphidiinae) new to Britain British Journal of Entomology and Natural History 22 : 255-263 .
  • BROAD, G R ( 2009 ) Review of "Karyotypes of Parasitic Hymenoptera" by Vladimir E. Gokhman Parasites & Vectors 2 : 37 . http://www.parasitesandvectors.com/content/pdf/1756-3305-2-37.pdf
  • BROAD, G R ( 2009 ) Syntretus breviradialis van Achterberg & Haeselbarth (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), new to Britain British Journal of Entomology and Natural History 22 : 253 .
  • Gómez, I C, Sääksjärvi, I E, Veijalainen, A. and BROAD G R

    ( 2009 ) Two new species of Xanthopimpla (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae) from Western Amazonia, with a revised key to the Neotropical species of the genus ZooKeys 14 : 55-65 . ZooKeys
  • O'Connor, J.P., Nash, R. and BROAD, G.R. ( 2009 ) An Annotated Checklist of the Irish Hymenoptera . The Irish Biogeographical Society : Dublin , 211 pp. .
  • Quicke D L J, Laurenne, N M, Fitton, M G and Broad, G R ( 2009 ) A thousand and one wasps: a 28S rDNA and morphological phylogeny of the Ichneumonidae (Insecta: Hymenoptera) with an investigation into alignment parameter space and elision Journal of Natural History 43 : 1305-1421 .
  • Traugott M , Bell J R, BROAD G R, Powell W, Van Veen F J F, Vollhardt I M G, Symondson W O C ( 2008 ) Endoparasitism in cereal aphids: molecular analysis of a whole parasitoid community Molecular Ecology 17 : 3928-3938 . 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2008.03878.x
  • Laurenne N M, BROAD G R and Quicke D L J ( 2006 ) Direct optimization and multiple alignment of 28S D2–D3 rDNA sequences: problems with indels on the way to a molecular phylogeny of the cryptine ichneumon wasps (Insecta: Hymenoptera) Cladistics 22 : 442-473 . 10.1111/j.1096-0031.2006.00112.x
  • BROAD G R and Shaw M R ( 2005 ) The species of four genera of Metopiinae (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae) in Britain, with new host records and descriptions of four new species Journal of Natural History 39 : 2389-2407 . 10.1080/00222930500102074
  • Hill M O, Baker R, BROAD G R, Chandler P J, Copp G H, Ellis J S, Jones D, Hoyland C, Laing G I, Longshaw M, Moore N, Parrott D, Pearman D, Preston C D, Smith R M and Waters R ( 2005 ) Audit of non-native species in England. English Nature Research Reports. English Nature, Peterborough. 81 pp .
  • Quicke D L J, Fitton M G, BROAD G R, Crocker B, Laurenne N M and Miah M I     ( 2005 ) The parasitic wasp genera Skiapus, Hellwigia, Nonnus, Chriodes, and Klutiana (Hymenoptera, Ichneumonidae): Recognition of the Nesomesochorinae stat. rev. and Nonninae stat. nov. and transfer of Skiapus and Hellwigia to the Ophioninae Journal of Natural History 39 : 2559-2578 . 10.1080/00222930500102546
  • BROAD G R, Laurenne, N M and Quicke D L J ( 2004 ) The genus Nipponaetes (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Cryptinae) in Costa Rica, with a reassessment of the generic limits European Journal of Entomology 101 : 651-655 . European Journal of Entomology
  • BROAD G R  ( 2004 ) Generic synonymies affecting the Orthocentrinae (Hym., Ichneumonidae), with notes on the composition of the subfamily Entomologist's Monthly Magazine 140 : 297-299 .
  • Quicke D L J, Palmer-Wilson J, Burrough A and BROAD G R ( 2004 ) Discovery of calcium enrichment in cutting teeth of parasitic wasp ovipositors (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonoidea) African Entomology 12 : 259-264 . African Entomology
  • Gauld I D, Wahl D B and BROAD G ( 2002 ) The suprageneric groups of the Pimplinae (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae): a cladistic re-evaluation and evolutionary biological study Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 136 : 421-485 . 10.1046/j.1096-3642.2002.00031.x
  • BROAD G R and Quicke D L J ( 2000 ) The adaptive significance of host location by vibrational sounding in parasitoid wasps Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B 267 : 2403-2409 . 10.1098/rspb.2000.1298
  • Quicke D L J, Fitton M G, Notton D N, BROAD G R and Dolphin K ( 2000 ) Phylogeny of the Ichneumonidae (Hymenoptera): a simultaneous molecular and morphological analysis, In: Hymenoptera: Evolution, Biodiversity and Biological Control. Austin A D and Dowton M, eds. . CSIRO Publishing : Canberra , . Hymenoptera: Evolution, Biodiversity and Biological Control. Austin A D and Dowton M, eds.