Currently viewing the category: "Potter and Mason Wasps"
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Subject: wasp ?
Location: Amherst Nova Scotia Canada
May 23, 2014 5:45 pm
I took this picture May 22 2014 on our front deck, I have tried to identify this insect but cannot
Signature: Charles W Linney

Mason Wasp

Mason Wasp

Hi Charles,
This is a Mason Wasp or Potter Wasp in the family Eumeninae.  We are having trouble identifying it to the species level since so many species and genera look so similar, so we will leave that to an expert.  Members of the family, according to BugGuide:  “prey mainly upon moth larvae” and they provision their nests with the caterpillars to provide food for the developing larval wasps.  The nests often resemble small ceramic pots and they are constructed of mud.

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Subject: Found on ficus
Location: Southern NY
February 10, 2014 7:08 pm
Hi Bugman,
We had a ficus plant on our porch this summer. We brought it in last September when the weather started getting colder. I noticed what I thought was a cocoon, but my friend said it was an egg sac. It looks like something hatched out of one side. What kind of bug would make this?
Thank You Bugman,
Signature: Perplexed in NY

Potter Wasp Pots

Potter Wasp Pots

Dear Perplexed in NY,
These are nests of a Potter Wasp.  According to BugGuide:  “Females lay egg in mud nest (built on twig, etc.), then provision with small caterpillars esp. cankerworms. Also reported to provision with sawflies.”
  BugGuide also indicates:  “There are at least two generations in a year, from late spring to early fall. Overwintering takes place at the prepupal instar, in the mud pots built by last generation mother females. Emerging adults will be the first generation of next year.”

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Subject: New Wasp to the Back
Location: Hawthorne, CA
September 3, 2013 4:32 pm
Hi Daniel,
I caught this wasp foraging about in the Mexican Sunflower blooms yesterday and don’t recognize it. I thought I’d seen and identified them all. Can you please help?
Signature: Thanks, Anna Carreon

Possibly Mason Wasp

Possibly Mason Wasp

Hi Anna,
We believe your wasp is in the subfamily Eumeninae, the Potter and Mason Wasps.  There are many genera on BugGuide that look similar, including
Ancistrocerus, Euodynerus and Pachodynerus, but we cannot say with any certainty that your wasp is a member of any of them.  We will try to get additional information for you.  Our archives are populated with quite a few Potter or Mason Wasps from your garden.

Hi Daniel,
I think it is most likely Euodynerus.  Thanks, and I’ll keep trying to narrow it down.
Anna

Eric Eaton Responds
Hi, Daniel:
I agree….This is Euodynerus hidalgo in all likelihood.  I’m absolutely positive at genus level anyway.
Eric

Eric and Daniel,
Thanks for the work on this.  It didn’t seem as brightly colored as Euodynerus hidalgo.  Can we be sure it is not Euodynerus pratensis?  I would appreciate further input and thank you again for your time.  Gads, I’m questioning experts!  Just trying to learn more and more . . .
Anna

Hi Anna,
We cannot say for certain and Eric’s response was not definitive. 
Euodynerus hidalgo, according to BugGuide has: “Thin, lamellate, reflexed hind margins of 2nd and 3rd urotergites is diagnostic for this species.  The amount of black is highly variable in this species and other vespids. The eastern subspecies (boreoorientalis) is mainly black. Some specimens of this species from one locality in Florida have practically no red while others are almost completely red. In general, structural characters are more reliable and play a more important role in identification, though some species also show significant structural variation.”  We are not even certain what the first sentence in that quote means.

Update from Anna:  September 6, 2013
Hi Daniel,
I got a better shot of the same(?) wasp today and do agree with Eric’s determination that this is most likely Euodynerus hidalgo.  Thanks for everything!
Anna

Potter Wasp

Potter Wasp

Thanks for the update and the new photo Anna.

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Subject: Colorful Wasps of Summer
Location: Central Maryland, USA
August 27, 2013 10:04 am
Bugman, the wasps and bees really like this particular hemlock weed with many colorful varieties visiting it today. Looks like a Metallic Sweat Bee, a Digger Wasp, and one other black/white wasp. Would the black wasp with white bands possibly be a type of Mason Wasp?
Signature: Roger S.

Metallic Sweat Bee

Metallic Sweat Bee

Hi Roger,
Generally we don’t like making postings with diverse insects, but all your pollinators are in the order Hymenoptera, and they are all visiting the same blossoms for the same reason, to feed on nectar, so we are making an exception.  We agree with your identifications of the Metallic Sweat Bee which looks very much like this image on BugGuide, and the Digger Wasp,
Scolia dubia.

Digger Wasp

Digger Wasp

The third wasp is most likely a Potter Wasp and we believe it is in the genus Eumenes, which you can find pictured on BugGuide, however, we were not able to confirm a species identification.

Potter Wasp

Potter Wasp

 

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Subject: Wasp?
Location: Melbourne
February 25, 2013 12:12 am
Hi there, was in the St.kilda Botannical Gardens in Melbourne, wondering what it is? Thanks!
Signature: Peter Collins

Orange Potter Wasp

Orange Potter Wasp

Hi Peter,
Curiously, though you requested an identification, your files were named “potter” and this is a Potter Wasp, most likely the Orange Potter
Wasp, Eumenes latreilli, which we confirmed on the Brisbane Insect Website where it states:  “Potter wasps prey on caterpillars which they paralyze and place inside cells in their nests.”

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Subject: Unidentified wasp?
Location: Southeastern Ohio
December 27, 2012 10:28 am
This pollinator appeared for only a few days, feeding on the sedum in my garden in southeastern Ohio. Have not been able to find a photo of this particular critter. Maybe not a wasp?
Signature: Toni Leland

Four Toothed Mason Wasp

Dear Toni,
Since we just learned that nearly a foot of snow has been dumped on eastern Ohio, we suspect this is not a real recent photo.  If possible, can you let us know which month the sighting occurred?  This is a Four Toothed Mason Wasp,
Monobia quardidens, and according to BugGuide it is “Usually seen in open habitats with flowers” just as your email and photo indicates.  BugGuide also notes it:  “Usually nests in wood borings, but sometimes burrows in dirt banks. Sometimes takes over abandoned nests of carpenter bees or ground bees, also Sceliphron (mud dauber) cells. Nest is provisioned with caterpillars, and cells of nest are separated by mud partitions.” 

Daniel,
I am no longer in Ohio, thank goodness! Yes, lots of snow, and yes, this photo was taken in September of 2010.
Thanks very much for the ID. I do a lot of work with gardening sites and need to be as detailed as possible with my photos.
Regards,
Toni Leland
http://www.tonileland.com

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination