Subject: Weird Bug
Location: Harrisburg PA
May 23, 2015 5:46 am
I was hoping you could tell me what kind of insect this is. I found it hanging out on my screen door this morning and it scared the crap outta me! It’s all different colors and has this long tail? It’s not a stinger because it could move it. All together it’s probably about 8-12 inches long. I hope you can ID it for me! Thanks so much!
This is a Giant Ichneumon in the genus Megarhyssa, a group that is commonly called Stump Stabbers because the female uses her lengthy ovipositor to lay eggs beneath the surface of trees infested with the wood boring larvae of Wood Wasps like the Pigeon Horntail. We have never heard of a person being stung by a Giant Icheumon in the genus Megarhyssa, so we consider them to be harmless, though there is one group of Ichneumons in the genus Ophion with shorter ovipositors that are reported to sting people.