What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Metallic very large blue/black wasp
Location:  Fairfield, Maine USA
August 9, 2010 12:06 pm
Dear Bugman,
I saw this large iridescent thing wizz by me out in the meadow. I was able to track it down and get a few pictures before it flew away. Is this a Steel Blue Cricket Hunter (Chlorion aerarium) or maybe a Blue mud Wasp? I cannot tell so far. It was quite large, I dare even guess 2 inches long. It is also very active and almost never came to a full ”stop.” it is beautiful, but can/will it sting a person?
Thank you!
James R

Blue Mud Wasp

Hi James,
Nice job of narrowing down the identification of this lovely Thread-Waisted Wasp.  In the past, we frequently mixed up the two, but now we are usually correct.  We believe this is a Blue Mud Wasp,
Chalybion californicum, which if profiled on BugGuide where it is described as:  “A large, active, blue-black wasp with irridescent blue wings. Frequents flowers for nectar and buildings for nest sites. Compare “Steel-Blue Cricket Hunter”, (or “Blue Mud Dauber”), Chlorion aerarium, which preys on crickets. This is about the same size as Chalybion, and is said to have a longer pedicel (narrow waist between thorax and abdomen). The body of Chalybion looks much more hairy, and more steely-blue, based on specimen photos. BugGuide also indicates:  “Females construct mud nests in sheltered areas, often under the eaves of buildings, and provision them with spiders. Sometimes refurbishes the nests of other mud-daubers, such as Sceliphron.” We love that you have abbreviated your photos as “BMW”.

Blue Mud Wasp

Hi Daniel,
Thank you so much for the identification.  I kept going back and forth and finally just had
to ask the experts!
Best wishes,
James

Awesome James.  Be sure to let us know what the experts think.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Location: Fairfield, Maine
Share →

2 Responses to Blue Mud Wasp

  1. Ed says:

    I just found one indoors, will it sting?

Add Comment Register



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>