Any idea what this cool red and blue flying creature might be? I saw him dragging this huge dead spider across my driveway. Is it possible that it made the kill?
First the Spider Wasp did NOT make the kill. The spider is alive. The spider is paralyzed. The spider will become food for the young wasp. The female wasp will provision a nest with spiders that are stung and paralyzed and then lay an egg. The egg hatches and begins to feed on the still living spider, a fresh food source. We are not sure of the species, but have located what looks like your wasp on BugGuide. It is listed as the genus Tachypompilus. We have put in a query to a real expert, Eric Eaton for substantiation.
Ed. Note: We just heard back from Eric Eaton who agrees: “VERY hard to tell from the image, but the prey (wolf spider) suggests that this is indeed Tachypompilus. One other possibility is Poecilopompilus, but they attack orb weavers, and I have not seen one with violaceous wings. So, yes, Tachypompilus. Eric “