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Thread-waisted Wasp - Chalybion zimmermanni

Thread-waisted Wasp - Chalybion zimmermanni
Ozark Mountains, Searcy County, Arkansas, USA
June 14, 2007
Size: 22mm
Nectaring on dill weed in the garden.

I'll propose that this is a Blue Mud Wasp (Chalybion californicum). It seem less metallic blue than Chlorion. Ditto for having a longer pedicel. But then, it could be something completely different.


How do you know? (Not disputing ... just what to learn.)

Abdomen & Antennae shapes
This species can safely be sexed using the guide that I created, for the sister taxon, Chalybion californicum:

Most of the images here are not yet sexed, but here are some fine examples for you:


Chalybion zimmermanni?
I'm now thinking Chalybion zimmermanni, which should range into Arkansas. You might also try posting this to the Facebook Hymenopterists Forum page.

I don't think this is neither genus. I'm leaning toward Isodontia, but never seen one with any metallic highlights to speak of....


So I was right: It is something completely different. :-)

Isodontia was actually my first choice. What leaned me away from Isodontia was that these wasps looked a little smaller and less bulky to me -- as if I've looked at enough specimens to know. Also, I took a lot of images of these constantly moving and flitting wasps and I'd say that holding their wings folded parrellel to their bodies seems to be their normal at rest or nectaring position.

There are many of these wasps still around (if I'm not getting several different species confused while observing). Assuming I'm able to collect a specimen, is there anything definitive (or semi-definitive) I should look for and try to photograph that would help nail down the genus?

Thank, Marvin.

Yeah, on second glance it is not Isodontia, either. Ah, well.

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