Subject: Daniel – Bee or Wasp or Bee Wasp?
Location: Hawthorne, CA
October 15, 2013 9:33 pm
This was on the Cosmos blooms in back today. I think it’s not the same sand wasp that we submitted a while back, but is it in the same family?
Signature: Thanks, Anna Carreon
Your recent photos are inspiring us to plant cosmos in the garden again. We planted them many years ago, and one year they were about six feet tall. They naturalized, but over the years, they have stopped coming up on their own. We may have to plant a pack of seeds this winter. This wasp reminds us of a male Scarab Hunter Wasp, Campsomeris tolteca, that we photographed on native baccharis in Elyria Canyon Park several years ago. The photo on BugGuide is much clearer than the photos we took. We will check with Eric Eaton to see if this is a closely related species or if we are totally in left field.
Eric Eaton Provides a Correction: Cuckoo Leaf Cutter Bee
This is way smaller than a Campsomeris. It is a cuckoo leafcutter bee, genus Coelioxys. This one is a female. Males have a blunt tip to the abdomen, though there are often teeth or spikes on the tip.
I’m glad you are thinking of planting cosmos. We make it a point to keep it around, as it attracts many “new to us” bugs. Additionally, the Lesser Goldfinches and American Goldfinches hungrily partake of the seeds. Our cosmos are about my height this year, 5′ 8″. We can send you seeds if you wish . . .
I’m most likely incorrect, but I don’t think this wasp is Campsomeris tolteca. It’s coloring is more that of the sand wasp in the family Bembix, and it doesn’t seem to have as “hairy” a body as the Campsomeris tolteca. 2013/10/04/sand-wasp-8/. We hope Eric Eaton has time to respond, and thank you once again.
It would be so sweet of you to send cosmos seeds. We think we will take you up on the offer.
Daniel and Eric,
Oh, joy! I’m excited to have an id for a “new to us” bug. Thank you.
I will start collecting soon. You are most kind.