Currently viewing the category: "Horntails, Wood Wasps and Sawflies"
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Bug Question
I live in Weymouth, MA and I found this bug in my house. What the heck is it? Thanks
Jenn

Hi Jenn,
This is a Pigeon Horntail, Tremex columba. It is a non-stinging wasp relative. The larvae bore in wood. If you have firewood in the house, it may have emerged from the wood pile.

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Here’s another for ya!
I ran into this on the same hiking trip… Never saw it before and my ID books are at school. Can ya help? Thanks
cg

Hi Chad,
Nice Pigeon Horntail, Tremex columba, image. We can’t wait to post your mating Walkingsticks as soon as we properly identify the species. Where were these images taken?

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Found in Labrador
Hello, I found this catepillar on the Trans Labrador Highway east of Labrador City, NL in September 2005. It’s the first time I’ve ever seen one. Could you please tell me what it is? Thanks. Cool web site….
Rick

Hi Rick,
Often mistaken for caterpillars, Sawflies are actually related to wasps. This is from the genus Cimbex.

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Apple green caterpillar with yellow dorsal and black spinacles
Hi,
I live in Milan and have a rose creeper on my balcony that has recently become the home for 25+ caterpillars. I have been searching around but I have yet to find out what they are. Your site’s excellent and seems to have everything so I’ve probably just missed it somewhere. Please could you take a look and let me know what you think they might be?
Many thanks!
Lucy

Hi Lucy,
These are not caterpillars which metamorphose into butterflies or moths. These are wasp relatives known as Sawflies. Sorry, can’t tell you the species.

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New Ichneumon for your site?
I’ve been perusing your site and just can’t get enough! Great photos, quick and entertaining wit, and solid information. Your dedication shows! Thanks for doing this : ) Now on to our bug in question. My daughter and I spotted this lovely insect on one of our many outdoor "expeditions" for fun. On Sept. 18, 2005 this beauty was clearly laying eggs in the lichen-laden bark of a tree near the banks of the Fox River in northern Illinois (Aurora IL). I have been unable to find a photo of it on your site and was hoping you’d further identify it for me. An interesting thing to mention was that within it’s vicinity, within inches, there were two ovipositors stuck in the bark, minus the insects’ bodies! When I tried to pull them out they wouldn’t budge and broke off. Dummy me, should have taken pictures first. Do you know if these insects commonly die while depositing their final eggs or sometimes get their ovipositors stuck? At the base of the tree we did find the dried-up body of another of these insects, minus the ovipositor.
Thanks so much!
Michelle & Becky N.
Lily Lake, IL

Hi Michelle and Becky,
This is a Pigeon Horntail, Tremex columba, the host insect of the Giant Ichneumon. Horntails are Sawflies, wasp relatives. They have wood boring larvae that the larval Ichneumons use for food. We have heard reports of both Horntails and Ichneumons dying in childbirth, dying with their ovipositors stuck in a trunk.

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Caterpillar identification (hopefuilly!)
Hi!
I was digging around hoping that I could ID these guys. I am in upstate, NY (finger lakes) and this was taken Sept 13, 2005. They were happily munching on some Pignut Hickory leaves until I disturbed them, and then their butts went up in the air. I tried touching them with a stick, and they have an amazingly strong ability to push on the stick and act quite aggressively. I have never seen these before, and am hoping for an ID. Thinking of going back there and gathering a couple to wee what they become. Probably a dull, grey moth.
Thanks!
Mark Wyman

Hi Mark,
Sorry for the delay. This one was tough. These are not caterpillars, but the larva of a wasp relative known as a Sawfly. We actually found it while researching a spider wasp after our caterpillar searching turned up nothing. It appears to be Croesus latitarsus, or something very closely related. We located a link on BugGuide that says they raise their bodies to defend themselves.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination