Subject: It’s pretty looking, but that stinger isn’t!
Location: Southern Saskatchewan (Regina)
July 5, 2013 5:28 am
I found this wee friend hanging out in my room this morning. It’s just kicking into summer here, and the insects are becoming plentiful. He’s about an inch long, attracted to light, and didn’t seem very active. I’m just glad I noticed the stinger and didn’t use my bare hands to remove him. 🙂
This is an Ichneumon Wasp, a member of a group of Parasitoid Wasps that parasitize other insects and arthropods. We believe this is a Short-Tailed Icheumon in the genus Ophion which you can find pictured on BugGuide where it states: “Adult Ophion species will hunt for their host caterpillar. Usually one egg is laid per host. Caterpillar usually dies during pupal stage though wasp larva remains to pupate itself” and “They are often attracted to artificial lights.” Most Ichneumons, including Giant Ichneumons in the genus Megarhyssa, which can have five inch long stingerlike ovipositors, are harmless and do not sting, however we have read that Ophion species might be capable of stinging.