Subject: As coined by a commenter – a Nope Striped Nopey Nope Nope
Location: South Eastern Wisconsin
August 7, 2015 7:03 am
First off, thank you for providing such a valuable resource for us “what in the heck is this thing”ers; it has helped solve more than a few similar situations and I continue to direct people here when they have bug identification questions (and to donate).
This morning a friend of mine posted the attached pictures (apologies for the blurriness) asking for help. At first glance it was assumed to be a black and yellow mud dauber, but the abdomen seems to be much too large (as well as striped). I had attempted (in vain) to identify what the forked end on the abdomen was as well, but looking at it now I think it may just be other parts (legs?) that are folded under the body. Also, the fat thorax (much larger than I’m accustomed to around here) throws me for a loop. The segmentation just doesn’t seem right for a wasp.
Sadly, this little guy (gal?) said hi to individuals who were less than hospitable and was swatted down in their prime.
Thanks for your help in advance!
Based on the long antennae, we decided to begin our searching among the parasitic wasps known as Ichneumons, and we quickly found a similar looking individual identified as Setanta compta on the Nature Search site, but the striping on that individual goes to the tip of the abdomen while your individual has a black tipped abdomen. The striping on the legs is also different, but we still turned to BugGuide to see if there was more variation in the species. We then determined you have a different species, and we located a very good match on BugGuide, but alas, it is only identified to the tribe Ichneumonini. Your individual also looks similar to Diphyus palliatorius pictured on the French language page Aramel.Free. According to BugGuide, in the family Ichneumonidae there are: “About 5,000 described species in North America, possibly 3,000 more undescribed; arguably, the largest animal family,” and we don’t believe we will be able to provide you with an exact species identity, but we do believe the closest we can come is the unidentified individual on Bugguide.
You are incredible – thank you so much for your work in this! I can’t imagine how much time you, and your team, invest into these requests, but know that it is sincerely appreciated.
You are most welcome Matthew. Were it not for identification requests with excellent images, we would not have much of a site.