Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Calendar
Upcoming Events

BugGuide is a National Moth Week Partner. How to add your National Moth Week 2021 photos. July 17-25.

Photos of insects and people from the Spring 2021 gathering in Louisiana, April 28-May 2

National Moth Week 2020 photos of insects and people.

Photos of insects and people from the 2019 BugGuide Gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

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

Previous events


TaxonomyBrowseInfoImagesLinksBooksData
Photo#205528
Is this a wasp, yellowjacket or hornet? - Sphecius speciosus

Is this a wasp, yellowjacket or hornet? - Sphecius speciosus
Sterling, Loudoun County, Virginia, USA
July 24, 2008
Size: 3/4 inch
This guy is hanging out by my front door and I am curious if it is dangerous.

Looks like a cicada killer wasp
and no they are not dangerous unless you are a cicada ; )


 
thank you!
Just to calm my kids (and myself) do they happen to sting people? He hangs out within feet of our front door and my kids are terrified to walk out the door (OK,me too ;))

 
No reason to be afraid
they are not aggresive at all towards people. the one in your photo appears to be male... they just sorta sit at the top of leaves like that and just wait for females. they take no notice to people
they have the ability to sting, but would never do so unless you walked right up to one and grabbed it! :D

 
Clarification.
Only FEMALE cicada killers can sting, and they are too busy digging burrows and hunting cicadas to bother people. Males cannot sting (they have a "pseudostinger" at the tip of the abdomen to fool us), but they are territorial and do behave aggressively toward most intruders.

Comment viewing options
Select your preferred way to display the comments and click 'Save settings' to activate your changes.