Shining black with some white pubescence, hind tarsi partly white. Largest species in the genus.
Forewing of this group (tribe Trypoxylini) has one submarginal cell, and the marginal cell is pointed apically. Likewise, in this tribe, abdomen is narrow, but enlarged apically (i.e., not much of a wasp waist), and longer than head and thorax.
Eastern North America: Massachusetts south to Florida, west to Kansas, Texas.
Spring and summer. March-September (North Carolina).
Builds characteristic "pipe organ" nests on walls, etc. Provisions with 3-18 spiders per cell. Males may stand guard at nest during its construction and while females forage. Males emit a loud buzzing sound when nest is approached or disturbed.
Reported to be non-aggressive unless molested.
Arnett, p. 597--description, gives size as 14 mm, but this is likely a typographic error for 24 mm. (1)
Salsbury, p. 285--photo (2)
Borror and White, pp. 350-351, illustration of wing venation for this subfamily (3)
Lutz, 3rd edition, p. 420 (4)
Swan and Papp, p. 563, fig. 1222--nest (5)
O'Neill, p. 174, fig. 6-5C, nest (6)
--good photos of nests, grubs