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Species Sphex ichneumoneus - Great Golden Digger Wasp

Sphex ichneumoneus? - Sphex ichneumoneus - male Great Golden Digger Wasp - Sphex ichneumoneus Great Golden Digger Wasp? - Sphex ichneumoneus Great Golden Digger Wasp, Ferson Creek Fen Park - Sphex ichneumoneus Great Golden Digger Wasp - Sphex ichneumoneus Great golden digger wasp? - Sphex ichneumoneus wasp - Sphex ichneumoneus - female Sphex ichneumoneus with prey - Sphex ichneumoneus - female
Classification
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)
Subfamily Sphecinae
Tribe Sphecini
Genus Sphex
Species ichneumoneus (Great Golden Digger Wasp)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Sphex ichneumoneus (Linnaeus, 1758). Synonyms, etc.:
Sphex ichneumonea (spelling/gender)
Explanation of Names
Species name, ichneumoneus, is Greek for tracker (1).
Size
15-27 mm
Identification
A robust sphecid, frequent on flowers and very active. Head and thorax have golden hair. Abdomen black with orange/red on first segment.
Range
United States and southern Canada, south into neotropics
Habitat
Fields, meadows, with sandy areas nearby
Season
June-October (North Carolina), August-October (Kansas), July-August further north. As early as April in Florida.
Food
Takes nectar at flowers.
Life Cycle
Female digs burrow almost vertically. Cells are dug radiating out from central tunnel. Larvae are provisioned with crickets, camel crickets, katydids (long-horned grasshoppers). One paralyzed prey is placed in each cell, and one egg is laid on it. One generation per year.
Print References
Arnett and Jacques, #289 (2)
Arnett, p. 595 (3)
Brimley, p. 444 (4)
Evans, Wasp Farm (1)
Evans, The Wasps--discusses life history briefly, gives bibliography, p. 56, photo with prey, plate 5 (5)
Lutz, 3rd. ed., plate 99--Chlorion ichneumonea (6)
Milne, p. 845, fig. 456 (7)
Powell, p. 341, fig. 442 (8)
Salsbury, p. 283--photo (9)
Works Cited
1.Wasp Farm
Howard Ensign Evans. 1963. Comstock Publishing.
2.Simon & Schuster's Guide to Insects
Dr. Ross H. Arnett, Dr. Richard L. Jacques. 1981. Fireside.
3.American Insects: A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico
Ross H. Arnett. 2000. CRC Press.
4.Insects of North Carolina
C.S. Brimley. 1938. North Carolina Department of Agriculture.
5.The Wasps
Howard Ensign Evans, Mary Jane West Eberhard. 1970. University of Michigan Press.
6.Field Book of Insects of the United States and Canada, Aiming to Answer Common Questions,
Frank Eugene Lutz. 1935. Putnam Pub Group.
7.National Audubon Society Field Guide to Insects and Spiders
Lorus and Margery Milne. 1980. Knopf.
8.California Insects
Jerry A. Powell, Charles L. Hogue. 1989. University of California Press.
9.Insects in Kansas
Glenn A. Salsbury and Stephan C. White. 2000. Kansas Dept. of Agriculture.