Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
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Upcoming Events

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa

Photos from the 2010 Workshop in Grinnell, Iowa

Photos from the 2009 gathering in Washington


Family Sphecidae - Thread-waisted Wasps

Ammophila sp. - Ammophila - female Great Golden Digger Wasp - Sphex ichneumoneus big wasp on liatris - Sphex ichneumoneus - female Possible Rose Shoot Sawfly - Chalybion californicum Thread-waisted wasp (Eremnophila aureonotata) - mating pair - Eremnophila aureonotata - male - female Unknown Hymenoptera - Chalybion californicum - female black and yellow mud dauber - Sceliphron caementarium Common Thread-waisted Wasp (Ammophila procera)  - Ammophila procera - male
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon (Aculeata - Ants, Bees and Stinging Wasps)
No Taxon (Apoid Wasps (Apoidea)- traditional Sphecidae)
Family Sphecidae (Thread-waisted Wasps)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
This site follows the classification of Pulawski (2010)(1)
125 spp. in 11 genera in our area(2), >720 species in 19 genera worldwide(3); 21 spp. in Canada(4); 44 spp. in e. US(5) (MI list(6), FL list)
Overview of our fauna:
Family Sphecidae
Subfamily Sceliphrinae
Subfamily Sphecinae
Body 10-30 mm
Abdomen long and stalked (petiolate), giving the body a "thread-waisted" appearance; middle tibiae with two apical spurs; body may be all black (sometimes tinged with metallic blue or green), black and red, yellow and black, or white and black.
Much of North America and the world.
Most species nest in the ground, usually in areas that have sparse or no vegetation; some species construct aerial nests composed of mud; a few species nest in hollow plant stems or abandoned bee burrows in logs.
Larvae feed on the paralyzed bodies of a variety of arthropods (the host varies according to wasp species) provided to them by adult wasps; common hosts include spiders, grasshoppers, and caterpillars.
Adults feed on nectar from flowers and extrafloral nectaries, honeydew, and body fluids of their prey.
Life Cycle
The large majority of species are solitary nesters; some species are kleptoparasitic, using prey caught by other wasps in order to provide it to their own larvae.
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