What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Half Ant, Half Caterpillar?

Flightless Female Flower Wasp

Half Ant, Half Caterpillar?
Location: Spoon Bay Lookout, NSW, Australia
December 28, 2010 5:07 am
Hello bugman!
I went to a lookout to take some photos (I love my photography) at a lookout over Spoon Bay near Forrester’s Beach in NSW. Behind me crawling on the wooden deck of the lookout was a very strange and unique insect, with the head, and upper body of a large ant, and the lower half appeared to be a spotted caterpillar abdomen. What I thought anyway. I happened, and was lucky enough, to have my macro lens with me to take a few shots.
I’ve never seen anything like it, would you be able to enlighten me with the title and description of this insect?
Signature: From Cassy

Flightless Female Flower Wasp

Dear Cassy,
We are quite excited to be able to post your excellent images.  In early November of this year, we posted an image of a Wasp from Wollongong that we identified as a male Flower Wasp in the family Tiphiidae, and during that search, we found a photo of a flightless female Flower Wasp tentatively identified as Thynnus apterus on Red Bubble.  That individual was photographed during the mating ritual at Emerald Beach, New South Wales.  In November 2009, we posted a photo from Tasmania that is very similar to your photo and that Eric Eaton identified as a flightless female Flower Wasp, possibly in the genus
Catocheilus.  So, while we are confident that this is a flightless female Flower Wasp in the family Tiphiidae, we are still not able to provide a conclusive identification.  Perhaps one of our readers can provide a reliable link with a conclusive identification for this marvelous flightless female Flower Wasp.

Flightless Female Flower Wasp

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Location: Australia

2 Responses to Flightless Female Flower Wasp from Australia

  1. Darryll says:

    I’ve just seen one of these fantastic looking bugs in my garden in Aldershot, England. She hid in the grass pointing her back end up like a flower bud.

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