Spider Wasp: Tachypompilus ferrugineus

Subject: Red body w/black stripes, blue wings
Location: Northeast Ohio (Fairport Harbor)
August 13, 2017 2:39 pm
I searched an insect identification website and could not find anything that matched this. It’s similar, but different enough from a flying carpenter ant or digger wasp.
This insect was found in my basement, in an empty laundry basket. I took it outside and photographed it. It’s got a smooth body (not hairy like a digger wasp) and the body is more red than a carpenter ant. This insect is probably 1.5 inches long, and the legs appear to also be more than an inch long. It was very slow moving, as if stunned.
August 13 (summer here in northeast Ohio). Today was 75-80 degrees and partly cloudy. My house is near Lake Erie, in the Village of Fairport Harbor.
I appreciate any insight.
Signature: Adam

Spider Wasp

Dear Adam,
This Spider Wasp is
Tachypompilus ferrugineus.  Spider Wasps are solitary wasps and they are not aggressive.  Female Spider Wasps hunt for Spiders as food for a developing brood, often located in an underground burrow.  You can compare your images to this BugGuide image.  Spider Wasps tend to be very active, so the sluggish behavior on the part of your individual might be related to its being trapped in your basement without food.  Adult Spider Wasps are pollinators frequently found visiting blossoms.

Spider Wasp

Thank you very much for taking the time to provide me the information. Your BugGuide image is exactly what I saw. I’ll keep an eye out for more in the future.  I have plenty of flowers and spiders in my yard.  Have a great day!


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