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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

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Subfamilies added to Sphecidae and tribes added to Syrphidae

I went ahead and sorted the sphecid wasps in the guide by subfamily because the unclassified specimens were getting very messy, and I can be a bit obsessive/compulsive about this type of thing :)

Since I'm no expert, I would appreciate it if someone would double-check to see if I placed each genus in their correct subfamily and/or catch any other mistake.

I have also added tribes to the Syrphidae, and would appreciate it if someone can verify that reorganization.

Subfamilies
I like the way your change looks. It makes things a lot easier and clearer. I tried to do the same with Syrphidae, but I still don't know how to put the genera under each subfamily. There must be an easy way.
(2 hours later) Never mind, now I know how to do it.

 
Syrphidae, tribes added
I added tribes under the syrphid subfamilies, but please make any changes if I messed up anywhere or if I used outdated classification.

Now we can throw all the Syrphus/Eupeodes-like flies under Syrphini :)

 
Syrphidae
Thanks for finishing what I started. It looks good so far.

I'm willing, but....
I'd be happy to check for you, Richard, but I don't have the slightest idea how to go about it. Can you, or someone, please give me a step-by-step formula (as in "search Sphecidae," then click....)?
Thanks.

 
Sphecidae
Thanks to Troy's recent addition of the taxonomy tab, you just have to look here:

http://bugguide.net/node/view/135/tree/all

 
Cool!
Thanks for the link, Richard. Your arrangement looks fine, nice work!

 
Crabronids
Should we should split the Crabronidae and the Sphecidae? That seems to be the currently accepted classification, as far as I've seen. Based on the Tree of Life Apoidea page it would seem that the Sphecidae including crabronids forms a paraphyletic group, which would make splitting them necessary from a scientific approach. However, we don't necessarily have to follow modern classification. We might want to leave the sphecids as is for now, as people familiar with the older classification would expect to find them all combined. Comments?

 
But What do I Know?:-)
As far as I know, Crabroninae is still a subfamily within the Sphecidae. The new edition of "An Introduction to the Study of Insects" even leaves it that way. A good case could be made to raise 'all' the subfamilies to family level. I agree that the current arrangement makes the classification a bit unwieldly.

 
Hmm
If the new edition of that book leaves them all within the Sphecidae that's probably a good reason for us to do so as well. I don't have the new edition, but I know they split up the Lygaeidae so I had thought they would have also split up the sphecids. There's more information on the family split on the pages of the sphecid catalogue here. It appears that all of the subfamilies except the Sphecinae are moved to Crabronidae. Since we currently have the bees and ants sitting outside the "wasps", a little more paraphyly probably won't hurt ;)

 
Crabronidae is a valid family distinct from Sphecidae
This is accepted by nearly all bee and apoid wasp (=sphecid) specialists at this point. However, Crabronidae has not yet been incorporated into the popular literature and websites even though partition of the former Sphecidae is well accepted and therefore likely to be permanent. It is usually very easy to distinguish true sphecids (large, thread-waisted, more pompilid-like then bee-like in aspect) from crabronids (if thread-waisted then usually smaller, more bee-like then pompilid-like in aspect). In general, it would be a very good idea to follow Pulawski's excellent online catalog. I see merit in retaining a category "Sphecidae" for purposes of categorizing images. Perhaps a qualifier could be added to the heading such as: "traditional Sphecidae (includes Crabronidae)". This would acknowledge the current classification without creating confusion.

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