Subject: Is this a wasp?
Location: northern IL
September 3, 2013 6:10 am
Hi. I am writing again with better photos. We live adjacent to a forest preserve in northern Illinois and always have lots of bugs in our house. This one we saw frequently in the winter and I was wondering if they were coming in on our firewood since they moved so slowly like they had just been unexpectedly awakened from hibernation. But just recently I have seen a couple of these flying around our skylight, definitely not moving slowly. Is this some type of wasp? I keep looking at the wasp pages on this site and others but can’t seem to find it.
My son made me promise not to kill the bug to take the picture. The insect did not want to cooperate. I ended up putting him in the freezer for a minute and then taking some pictures while he was stunned. He seemed to recover okay.
Signature: mk in the woods
Dear mk in the woods,
This is a Longhorned Borer Beetle in the family Cerambycidae, and your guess that they came in with the firewood is most likely correct. The larvae are wood borers and the heat of the home may have caused them to emerge early. Your individual resembles members of the genus Neoclytus, but we cannot find an exact match on BugGuide. Many members of this genus resemble Yellow Jackets and other wasps and this can be an effective defense mechanism. You can also find some very interesting information on Bug Eric, which is Eric Eaton’s very entertaining blog.
Thank you for your help!