Any idea what the heck this is?
Good evening.
Well I went out tonight to cut down two dead maple trees and that’s when I saw them. Unfortunately they are dead, I thought maybe they were wasps (as we have had problem with them lately) but after the deathly spraying I noticed they looked like nothing I had ever seen. The protruding black, well let’s call it a tail, was sticking in the tree?
Thanks,
Chris
Michigan

Hi Chris,
These are Pigeon Horntails, Tremex columba, and they are wasp relatives, but do not sting. The portruding tail is a female’s ovipositor, and she uses it to deposit eggs under bark so the wood boring larvae will have a food source. We have heard reports that sometimes she gets stuck and dies attached to the tree, and your letter substantiates that.

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