Currently viewing the category: "Wasps and Hornets"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What Kind of Bug is this?
Location: Suburbs of Chicago
May 27, 2016 6:01 pm
I am a student photographer and as an assignment I am to photograph nature and then explain my pictures. I took about 100 pictures (manual and automatic, color and black and white). After looking online no one in my family can identify this bug. It seems to not be using its 5th and 6th legs and it isn’t flying, maybe a wing is broken.
Signature: Autumn

Braconid, we believe

Braconid, we believe

Dear Autumn,
We do not yet have a species identification, but we have determined that your parasitic Wasp must be in the superfamily Ichneumonoidea, which according to BugGuide has only two families, the Braconids and the Ichneumons.  Our money was originally on this being a female Braconid, but our browsing through both families on BugGuide did not produce species that even looks similar.  We are posting your request as Unidentified and we hope it does not remain so tagged for long.

Ichneumon, possibly

Ichneumon, possibly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What the … Is this?
Location: Maryland USA
May 24, 2016 7:54 pm
I’ve seen wasps and crane flies. This seems to be closer to a wasp. When I tried to be sparing and set it free it attempted to sting me numerous times while not being able to break the skin it seems. It got back inside and brought family ( see photo 2) there does seem to be a stinger on them. I did in fact kill them both. Only get one shot in my house unless your a spider, then you get none. Anyways, do you have any idea of what this is? If you have some photo reference if greatly appreciate it. Thanks!
Signature: Chris Joy

Ichneumons

Ichneumons

Dear Chris,
We are very curious about your mini-guillotine, because we cannot fathom how you have managed to kill these two Ichneumon Wasps by removing their heads but otherwise leaving their bodies intact.  Most wasps in the family Ichneumonidae, probably the largest family on earth with the most individual species, are perfectly harmless, but members of the subfamily Ophioninae is capable of stinging.  According to BugGuide:  “Females have a very compressed abdomen and a short, very sharp ovipositor. The ovipositor can penetrate the human skin; most other ichneumons can’t ‘sting’.”  BugGuide also notes:  “Most species are crepuscular or nocturnal, some diurnal. They are known to come to lights.”  These Ichnuemons are solitary, and they did not conspire together to enter your home.  We suspect they were attracted to lights.  When folks write to us about stinging Crane Flies, we suspect they have confused them with members of this subfamily.

Dear Daniel,
I appreciate your response. That was what I suspected them to be. As far as mini guillotine, well the answer there is just an old fashion credit card and hitting them before they could fly away that simple. But thank you for answering my question I know you all are busy and I’m glad you had the time to respond.
VR
Chris

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Midas like bug
Location: NW Washington state
May 17, 2016 8:45 pm
Hi, We have an odd bug we’ve never seen. It was seen today 30 miles south of Canada/ US border in Western Washington.
It’s about 1 and 1/4 inches long.
Primarily black with striped legs and long cream antenna.
It was attracted to a newly washed black car.
Signature: Claudia

Wood Wasp

Wood Wasp

Dear Claudia,
This is a female Wood Wasp,
Urocerus albicornis, a species that does not sting.  According to BugGuide:  “hosts include fir, larch, spruce, pine, Douglas-fir, hemlock, and western red cedar.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Giant wasp in NJ
Location: New Jersey
May 13, 2016 5:09 pm
Hey bugman,
I pump gas in Northern New Jersey, and i found this big guy behind a gas door. I ended up removing the gas cap and filling the car before i even noticed, and was too afraid to put the cap back on.
I managed to snap the fist photo while in was still on the gas cap.
I was able to get it out with a broom without killing it, and snapped a second photo. I brought it to a safe distance and set it free.
It was a out an inch to an inch and a half long, yellow and black patterned abdomen, with black and blood red spattered on the head and back
Can you help me identify this type of bee/ wasp thing?
Signature: Sincerily, cstar4004

European Hornet

European Hornet

Dear cstar4004,
This is an introduced European Hornet,
Vespa crabro, a species that has been established in North America since the end of the 19th Century.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this bug???
Location: Los Barriles, Baja CA Sur
May 6, 2016 5:33 pm
Hi, I hope you can help identify this bug. It was crawling on my arm in the middle of the night, yikes. I swiped it off, very scratchy feeling. I didn’t notice the welt until the next morning and that was a week ago. Welt is getting bigger every day! We found two of them, one in the bed and one on the kitchen counter, have never seen one before.
Signature: Maureen

Velvet Ant

Velvet Ant

Dear Maureen,
This is a Velvet Ant, a flightless female wasp in the genus
Dasymutilla.  Velvet Ants have a very painful sting.  Based on your description, it does not sound like you were stung, as there would have been an immediate pain.  We have not heard anything about Velvet Ants having urticating hairs that can cause irritation, a reaction that can be caused by handling Tarantulas and some caterpillars and certain plants like stinging nettles, but that sounds like the reaction you have had.  We don’t normally cite Wikipedia, but they do have a very nice explanation on urticating hairs, but do not mention Velvet Ants.  Encyclopedia of the Deserts does mention this phenomenon:  “Females [Velvet Ants] produce noxious chemicals from the abdomen when disturbed, and when grabbed they bite viciously with large, sharp mandibles and sting with a long stinger that injects a painful toxin.  In addition, the hairs on their bodies are like tiny spears (called urticating hairs) that cause considerable irritation to the mouth and nasal passages of animals that attack them.”  See BugGuide for more information on Velvet Ants.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Black and yellow
Location: East Sussex, UK
May 1, 2016 3:35 pm
Spotted in my garden on April 30th…unfortunately dead.
The lighter patch on the body is in fact bright yellow but the photo is not that well lit.
Signature: Sue W

Birch Sawfly

Birch Sawfly

Dear Sue,
Your Sawfly reminds us so much of the North American Elm Sawfly that we searched for members of the genus in the UK.  We quickly found the Birch Sawfly,
Cimbex femoratus, on NatureSpot where it is described as “Up to 25mm long, the largest British Sawfly. The adult is easily recognised by the pale band on its shiny black abdomen. Wings are smoky brown colour with dark brown margins. The antennae are yellow tipped.”  The site also states:  “Local throughout Britain, not very common” and “Uncommon in Leicestershire and Rutland.”  There is a very nice image on Wild About Britain.  Sawflies are solitary, non-stinging relatives of Ants, Bees and Wasps.

Thank you very much Daniel.
Greatly appreciate your swift response.
All the best
Sue

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination