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

Subject: Wasp or Hornet?
Location: Truro, MA
July 26, 2014 7:39 am
I live in Truro, MA. This insect sits on the corner of my deck each morning that it is sunny but not when it is cloudy or in the evenings. It is quite large (over an inch), and stays all day making the deck unusable. I can’t get close enough to spray because it immediately flies and appears aggressive. Can you tell me what it is and if it is really aggressive.
Thank you.
Signature: Bill

Cicada Killer

Cicada Killer

Dear Bill,
This is a solitary wasp known as a Cicada Killer, a species that preys upon Cicadas.  This is likely a male, and male wasps are incapable of stinging.  He is likely defending territory against other males in the hope of luring a female into mating and digging a nearby burrow.  Female Cicada Killers are capable of stinging, but they are not aggressive.  We would urge you to abandon your attempts to spray this impressive Cicada Killer.  Normally, we get numerous Cicada Killer identification requests each summer, but this summer your submission is the only one we have received.

Thank you Daniel, for your help.  I will not spray.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: idenifying an insect
Location: Kimberley, South Africa
February 19, 2014 3:53 am
We saw this bright yellow eyed fly in November near Kimberley, South Africa.
Any idea what it is?
Thanks
Tjeerd de Wit
Pretoria
Signature: t de wit

Sand Wasp or Fly???

Sand Wasp

Hi Tjeerd,
This looks more like a Sand Wasp than a Fly to us.  We may not have time to research this completely before rushing off to work this morning, but we are posting your photo now and we will continue to research this gorgeous creature when we return to our offices.
  Here is a Sand Wasp image from ISpot.  Those orange legs are sure pretty.  Your photo is gorgeous.

Thanks a lot. You remarks took me to this site: http://www.ispot.org.za/node/207535?nav=parent_ob where the same wasp is shown, a Crabronidaea
Many thanks.
Greetings
TdW

Hi again Tjeerd,
And there is a comment with a link to Wikipedia and the indication the genus of this beauty is
Tachysphex.  The Sand Wasp tribe of Bembicini is contained within the family Crabronidae.  We believe the superfamily (if our memory of the endings is correct) Crabronidaea may be an obsolete taxonomy.  Here is the BugGuide taxonomy.

Hello Daniel
Thanks for your help. I notice insects is/are your passion .
Now this wasp knows its place in the hierarchy. So many insects, so many names. Maybe it’s good many many insects have not been discovered yet, your life would be even more complicated.
Greetings
TdW

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Planting Cosmos
Location:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
November 18, 2013
We used to have Cosmos flowers that naturalized in our garden many years ago after an initial planting in around 2001.  The seeds would drop and we would get new plants each year.  One especially wet year, they grew to well over six feet tall.  Cosmos is an excellent plant for attracting pollinating insects.  We even posted photos of a female Leafcutter Bee on our blossoms in 2006.  Alas, for the past two years we have not had any Cosmos come up on its own, and we didn’t make the effort to purchase any new seeds.

Leaf Cutter Bee on Cosmos

Leaf Cutter Bee on Cosmos

Then several weeks ago, we identified a Cuckoo Leafcutter Bee  for Anna in Hawthorne, and she offered to send us some seeds.  They arrived a few days ago and we have been planting Cosmos seeds among the winter vegetables we put in this weekend, beginning with carrots and onions.  We hope to be able to provide you with photos of insects visiting our Cosmos in the near future.  This is a good time to plant Cosmos in Southern California, but this charming annual can be grown throughout North America, and we would strongly suggest Cosmos as an ideal plant for a bug friendly garden.

Cuckoo Leafcutter Bee

Cuckoo Leafcutter Bee

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Wasp sp.?
Location: Sequoia NP, California
November 11, 2013 12:40 pm
I took this photo, in Sequoia NP, California, completely by accident! I was trying to photograph the Butterfly! Does anyone know which species of Wasp it is?
Signature: GaryT

Sand Wasp

Sand Wasp

Hi GaryT,
This appears to be a Sand Wasp in the tribe Bembicini, but we are uncertain of the species.  It appears to us to resemble members of the genus
Steniolia that are pictured on BugGuide.

Thank you very much for your really quick response. This at least gives me a starting point to look a bit deeper.
Thanks again

Let us know if you get a more specific identification and we can update the posting.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Daniel – New Bee?
Location: Hawthorne, CA
October 3, 2013 12:41 pm
Hi Daniel,
We saw what we are pretty sure is a bee in the back today and I know I’ve not seen one like this before. It also did a lot of crawling around on the gravel paths. Can you help?
Signature: Thanks, Anna Carreon

Sand Wasp

Sand Wasp

Hi Anna,
Perhaps this Sand Wasp in the genus Bembix was crawling on the gravel path in an effort to find a good location to build an underground burrow.  Female Sand Wasps provision the nest with Flies for the larval wasps. 

Sand Wasp

Sand Wasp

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Cicada killer with prey
Location: Roe, Monroe County, Arkansas
September 10, 2013 8:33 am
Thought I’d share this lucky shot with my cell phone camera! Taken 10:15 AM 9/10/2013 in Monroe County, AR. I was sitting on my porch enjoying the sunshine, and saw something fall from the tree. I was thrilled to watch this cicada killer drag her prey up the tree, where she paused above my hammock rope long enough for me to take a picture.
Signature: Sherry Young

Cicada Killer and Prey

Cicada Killer and Prey

Hi Sherry,
We believe this is the only photo of a Cicada Killer and her prey we have received this year.  Cicada Killers often drag paralyzed Cicadas up a tree or other high spot because they can then glide and fly toward the underground nest.  It is very difficult to gain altitude from the ground with such a heavy load.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination