Horntail or not?
My mother and her friend at work, caught this after much hysteria (apparently) thinking it was a wasp. We’re in Norfolk in the UK and it looks like, on your site, someone else has found one in the same area. It is about 3 – 4 inches long. Is it a Horntail? I’ve looked around the web and the pictures I’ve found of Horntails have different coloured eyes and abdomens to this, although they share a lot of other similarities. Also any idea whether it would sting? Thanks in advance!
This is virtually identical to the insect we received two days ago that we identified as a Horntail. One of our American Species, the Pigeon Horntail, Tremex columba, looks very similar except for the coloration. They do not sting. The female uses the stingerlike ovipositor to deposit eggs under the bark of trees where the young larvae bore into the wood. A websearch of Tremex and Britain might turn up a photo. Please let us know.