Subject: Colourful ant!
Geographic location of the bug: Jindivick, Australia
Time: 08:22 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: I have found a few very colourful ants in my vegetable garden recently, and was wondering if you knew the species, it is approximately 1.3 cm long, has some red features across its body and is covered in a metalic green/blue shell, its abdomen sometimes charges like a scorpion tail, but has no visable stinger – please note that the ants in these photos have not been harmed, and the one in the glass has been promptly released after photographs were taken, as it was within my house
How you want your letter signed: Ben, not into ants – but into this one
Though it is commonly called a Blue Ant, Diamma bicolor, this beautiful creature is actually a flightless, female Flower Wasp. According to Oz Animals: “Blue Ants are not ants at all but the wingless females of a species of Flower Wasp. The female is has a glossy blue green body with reddish legs. They move across the ground with a rapid restless motion with abdomen raised above the ground. The winged male and is slender and much smaller with more typical wasp appearance. Males have black with white spots on the abdomen. The female wasps paralyse mole crickets as food for their larvae. The female wasp can give a painful sting if disturbed, but they are not commonly encountered by people.”