Subject: Nighttime waspy thing?!
Location: Southern New Jersey just outside of Philadelphia
April 30, 2013 9:28 pm
Hello bugman! I have these annoying, non-aggressive wasp type bugs all over our property. I usually only find them at night, except for the occasional one that sneaks inside. I caught one the other day and he tried continuously to sting the paper towel, with what resembled a small stinger on his back end. They aren’t aggressive, they seem very unintelligent, and they are very thin in that there isn’t much matter to them. They are a reddish brown see-through color, with clear wings outlined in the same body color. I’ve found several different sizes of them as well. I’ve never seen or heard of a wasp being active at night, so I’m baffled as to what this could be! Southern NJ just outside Philadelphia, warm days(60-70º), cool spring nights(50-60º). Started noticing them last year around this time, lasting through the summer and warmer months of Fall. Any info you could give would be GREATLY APPRECIATED! Thank you (this picture i s zoomed in very close)
Signature: Annoyed in NJ
Dear Annoyed in NJ,
This is some species of Ichneumon, a member of a very large family of parasitic wasps. Some species are attracted to lights at night. See BugGuide for additional information on this family including this tidbit of information: “About 5,000 described species in North America, possibly 3,000 more undescribed; arguably, the largest animal family, with the estimated 60,000 species worldwide (up to 100,000, according to some estimates).”
Thank you so much for the information and quick response! I look forward to learning more about these little buggers!