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Subfamily Astatinae

wasp - Astata - female small wasp? - Astata - female Unknown Fly (?) - Astata Wasp - Diploplectron - male Small black bee with long antennae - Astata crabronid - Astata - male Unidentified Wasp - Astata Unknown insect - Astata
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 Crabronidae
Subfamily Astatinae
37 spp. in 3 genera in our area(1), >150 spp. in 4 genera worldwide(2)
In the nearctic (and north of Mexico), there are 3 genera in the subfamily Astatinae: Astata, Dryudella, and Diploplectron. From Bohart & Menke(3):
Males of both Astata and Dryudella can be distinguished from Diploplectron by their holoptic eyes, while male Dryudella are distinguished from male Astata by: malar space longer than mid-ocellus diameter; and sub-marginal cell I shorter than II on media (i.e. along their posterior edges).
Females of all three genera have dichoptic eyes (as well as 12 antennal segments vs. 13 for is common in Aculeata). Female Astata also have pygidial plate bordered by stout spines (whereas female Dryudella and Diploplectron do not); and sub-marginal cell II as long as or longer than I (shorter in Dryudella and Diploplectron). See key to genera in Bohart & Menke(3) for details on how to separate female Dryudella and Diploplectron.
In our area, most spp. are western, a few, transcontinental(4)
As far as is known, members of this group provision there larvae exclusively with Heteroptera. Nymphs and adults of the following families have been recorded: Pentatomidae, Scutelleridae, Lygaeidae, Reduviidae, Cydnidae, Alydidae, and Rhopalidae.(3)
A great amount of detailed info on subfamily Astatinae is provided in the classic 1976 reference by Bohart & Menke(3). (You can it read online at this Google Books link.)