Subject:  Iridescent wasp
Geographic location of the bug:  Delmont, Pennsylvania
Date: 05/12/2018
Time: 12:14 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  This spectacular wasp was found dead on my car seat.
It is just about a half inch long, living, I estimate.
How you want your letter signed:  Albert in Western PA

Cuckoo Wasp

Dear Albert,
This little beauty is a Cuckoo Wasp in the family Chrysididae.  According to BugGuide:  “Parasitoids feed on the larva of the host and cleptoparasites ‘steal’ the host’s food. The food-stealing behavior of cleptoparasite species resembles that of the cuckoo bird and gave rise to the cuckoo wasp’s name. Hosts of parasitoid species include bees, sphecid wasps, potter wasps, sawflies, silk moths, and the eggs of stick insects. Cleptoparasitic species feed on provisions of sphecid wasp nests, which may include dead spiders, true bugs, aphids, or thrips.”  They are harmless and cannot sting.

Cuckoo Wasp

Thank you very much!
It’s really stunning. It must have overheated inside the car.

Location: Delmont, Pennsylvania

One Response to Cuckoo Wasp

  1. Scott says:

    Had one land on me yesterday 5/12/2018 in Oil City, PA. I do not recall ever having seen one before.

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