Subject: What insect is this?
Location: Centennial Park, Sydney, Australia
April 20, 2014 6:04 am
I came across this insect by some flowers in Centennial Park, Sydney, Australia. I can’t say I’ve seen anything like it, so I thought I’d see if you know. Thanks.
Of this we are certain: This is a parasitic wasp that is classified as Parasitica or Parasitic Apocrita, which is not a true taxonomic category, but it is a means to group parasitic wasps together. We believe it is a Carrot Wasp in the family Gasteruptiidae, which we identified on BugGuide, and then verified on the Atlas of Living Australia as being a family that is found in Australia. We may be wrong, but the look of the hind legs and the antennae as well as the ovipositor are good indications that we are correct. According to BugGuide: “Larvae are predators or predators-inquilines (consume larval food, not the larvae) of other Hymenoptera that nest in twigs and in wood.” The Atlas of Living Australia notes: “Females oviposit in the nests of solitary bees (Apidae) and wasps (Vespidae) , where the larvae are predator-inquilines, eating the host egg or larvae and consuming the pollen store. Adult gasteruptiids may be seen on flowers or hovering near bare ground, logs or trees.”