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

Subject: Insect that Stores Dead Spiders
Location: Singapore
June 3, 2012 1:48 am
Good Day What’s That Bug,
I saw an insect about 1.5 inches in length flying around our house and when I followed it, it went in a corner of a CD rack under our TV.
I took a close look and tried prying off the white thing that the insect visited, hoping it was something hard but it turned out to be very brittle. I was really curious and was hoping I could remove the nest from its location and transfer it on another place but I ended up destroying it. When I took an even closer look, I saw dead spiders in it. I left it alone and saw the insect coming back in its nest and flying away. Only to notice that it was carrying away the spiders. Now, all the spiders are gone and what’s left are the remains of the ’nest’
Signature: Joy

Spider Wasp and Prey

Hi Joy,
This is a Spider Wasp in the family Pompilidae.  The female Spider Wasp stings and paralyzes spiders as food for her brood.  The nest is often constructed of mud.  We are very happy that your Spider Wasp relocated all the prey she spent so much time hunting.  After sealing the spiders in the nest, she will lay a single egg in each nest chamber.  Since the spiders are paralyzed and not dead, they will be a supply of fresh meat for the larvae.  Dead spiders would quickly dry out and not be an attractive food for the larva.  Here is a link to a Spider Wasp from Singapore that we found in our archives.

Spider Wasp with Prey

Thanks for the reply Daniel. I’ve been seeing another insect that looks like a spider wasp flying around the house at the same time when I found the wasp in the pictures I sent. It looks smaller than the one I found. Aside from the high pain index in wikipedia (, should I be alarmed with their presence?
Thank you,

Spider Wasps are not aggressive towards humans, but they might sting if carelessly handled.  The Tarantula Hawks are reputed to have very painful stings, but again, they are not aggressive toward humans.


What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Strange wasp looking things
Location: Corinth, NY
May 31, 2012 8:13 am
There were quite a number of these odd looking creatures all over the base of a dead tree, that a pileated woodpecker has been trying to chop down for the last couple of years.
Signature: Ken Rohling

Male Giant Ichneumons await the emergence of a female

Dear Ken,
This is an awesome photo.  The insects pictured are Giant Ichneumons,
Megarhyssa atrata, and they are commonly called Stump Stabbers.  These individuals are all males (see BugGuide) awaiting the emergence of a female for mating purposes.  The female Giant Ichneumon is responsible for the name Stump Stabber.  She has a very long ovipositor which is easily mistaken for a stinger.  She uses her ovipositor to deposit eggs beneath the bark of dead and dying trees.  Her offspring feed on the wood boring larvae of the Pigeon Horntail.  We have seen photos of male Giant Ichneumons awaiting the emergence of a female, but never in such great numbers.

Thanks, if you want the original file, just ask. There were dozens more right around there, and I would have shot more if I had known they didn’t sting. Usually, I’m not skittish, but last spring I hit a nasty nest of ground nesting hornets with a leaf blower, and took a couple dozen hits on the face and arms before I managed to dive into the river, shedding the blower in a blind run. Lol

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Large wasp-like insect?
Location: Brandon, Manitoba
June 3, 2012 9:29 pm
Hi there, I’m hoping you can help me. I found this bug, dead on my deck yesterday. I have never seen one before and cannot find anything similar online. I took a few pictures and am really hoping you can identify it for me.
Thank you!
Signature: Jenifer Loades-Suppes

Elm Sawfly

Hi Jenifer,
This impressive insect is an Elm Sawfly,
Cimbex americana, and it is a non-stinging relative of wasps and bees.  The larvae of the Elm Sawfly feeds on leaves and is often mistaken for a caterpillar.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: With butterflies come biological controls…
Location: Winnipeg MB
June 3, 2012 10:02 am
As much as we humans love butterflies, so do other insects – as food. This ichneumon was found in my small plastic greenhouse, which works as a spectacular bug trap. I identified it in Bugguide as Trogus pennator, a swallowtail caterpillar parasite.
Signature: Bugophile in Winnipeg


Dear Bugophile in Winnipeg,
We commend you on your identification.  Ichneumons are a diverse and varied group of parasitic wasps and they are not easy to identify and we are linking to the BugGuide page for the species.  We also have photos in our archive of a
Trogus pennator that emerged from a Black Swallowtail Chrysalis.  Thanks for sending us your photograph.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: habitat?
Location: Mathews, VA, USA
May 29, 2012 6:09 am
This is on my porch. The tube is flimsy and moves with the wind. I don’t see any bugs fly to it or arouund it. Do you know what it is?
Signature: Gloria

Hornet Nest

Hi Gloria,
Our initial thought was that this must be the first phase of the construction of the nest of a Bald Faced Hornet.  We did some research and came upon this At The Water blog that supports our theory.  Probably the queen is the only inhabitant at the moment, but she is likely raising her first generation of workers that will increase the size of the nest.  By the end of the summer, there could be more than 1000 Bald Faced Hornets in the nest

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Spanish beetele, Andalucia
Location: Ayamonte, Andalucia, Spain
May 28, 2012 12:41 pm
Here it is, it landed on my wife, and it was very large… about two inches long minimum
I cant find it on your website. Please advise what it is….
Signature: Andy W

Mammoth Wasp

Hi Andy,
This is not a Beetle.  It is a Mammoth Wasp and there are several submissions in our archive including one from Spain.  The Mammoth Wasp feeds on nectar and it is frequently seen visiting flowers, but the helpless larva feeds on the grubs of Rhinoceros Beetles.  The female Mammoth Wasp hunts for the Scarab Larva and stings it to paralyze it.  She then lays an egg, thus providing a fresh food supply for each of her progeny.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination