What am I seeing?
Location: Cornville, AZ
May 14, 2012
Hi Daniel –
Another pic attached for you, strange one.
What am I seeing here?
We have 10 Italian Cypress appx. 25 ft. tall here that we found the
Sawfly Larva on.  Did not want to take a chance on losing them so I
sprayed them all with Spinosad to kill the larva very early this morning.
Went back a few hours later to see if any of the larva were dead, collected
a few twigs in a plastic pail.  Some larva were dead, some still alive.  Shot
some pics and ran across the attached image.
Is this a newly hatched Sawfly of some other type of insect?
Thanks –
Lou Nigro

Sawfly Larva and what might be a Chalcid Wasp

Hi Lou,
We are creating a brand new posting for this image and linking to your original submission.  The other insect looks like a parasitic Hymenopteran, possibly a Chalcid Wasp.  There are some similar looking Chalcids, but they have larger hind legs.  Perhaps it is just the camera angle.  The Chalcid is a Parasitic Hymenoptera.  The female lays eggs within a host, usually the larva of a moth, fly or beetle.  It stands to reason that they might also parasitize Sawfly Larvae.  Most parasitic Hymenopterans are host specific.  It is possible that this Sawfly that is underrepresented on the world wide web has a species specific parasite that preys upon it.  We are going to tag this posting as Food Chain even though much of our response is speculation. 

Eric Eaton identifies the Mining Bee
The “wasp” is a bee in the genus Perdita.  How it got there I have no idea.

Hi Daniel –
Looks like you are right on, took a few more shots from different angles.
Could be a species specific one as the coloring is a bit different.
Depth of field this close is limited, wish the pic was sharper, will shoot a
few more later.
See attached –
Canon 7D, Tamron 180mm Macro Lens, ISO 100, 1/250 sec, f18 using a Canon flash on
ETTL, manual exposure, handheld.
I’m glad to see that there are wasps in the area, even though I killed some of them,
that are helping me out.  Further spraying will be kept to a minimum.
Wasp measured appx. 2mm in length.
Thanks –

Hi again Lou,
Since we were wrong about the Wasp and it actually being a Bee, we suspect it was collateral damage from your insecticide.  We are not sure why it was found on the Sawfly.

Location: Arizona

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