Subject: Is this a Giant Ichneumon?
Location: Tampa, Florida, USA
July 12, 2017 5:52 pm
I took this picture when I saw a strange bug during my lunch break today in Tampa, FL. I have never seen anything like it but Google images of giant ichneumons seem to look like it. It’s on a large column in front of the office building and is probably about four to six inches long including the very long tail.
Signature: Curiously, Paul

Crown of Thorns Wasp

Dear Paul,
Like the Giant Ichneumon, this Crown of Thorns Wasp is a parasitoid, but they are not closely related.  Here is an image from BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Reported to have two morphs, previously described as subspecies: ‘one with head and pronotum ferrugineous (
M. b. bicolor) and another uniformly brown or blackish (M. b. sickmanni)’ (Stephanid home page–Alexandre Pires Aguiar)” which means your color morph was once classified as Megischus bicolor bicolor.

Hi Daniel,
Thank you for taking the time and effort to identify that bug! The Crown of Thorns Wasp is definitely what I saw. I shared the information and the link with my coworkers 🙂
Hope you have a wonderful day!
Location: Tampa, Florida

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