Subject: Wingless wasp?
Location: Austin, Texas, USA
October 27, 2012 7:21 pm
I saw this insect working its way up a cedar tree outside the job. Thought it was an ant at first yet it appears to have some type of wing structure on its back. Not sure what it is. My guess would be a wingless wasp. It resembles a velvet ant minus the velvet. Feel free to post if you find this insect interesting.
This is an immature Broad Headed Bug which is believed to mimic the appearance of an Ant. Ants are in the same insect order as Wasps, Hymenoptera. Your confusion makes perfect sense. Immature Broad Headed Bugs effectively mimic Ants. Broad Headed Bugs are often called Ant Bugs. Here is a photo from BugGuide of an immature Broad Headed Bug in the genus Alydus.