Subject: Insect that Stores Dead Spiders
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’
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.
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 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spider_wasp#Schmidt_Pain_Index), should I be alarmed with their presence?
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.