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Photo#288908
Not Your Everyday, Ordinary, Black and Yellow Insect - Megarhyssa atrata

Not Your Everyday, Ordinary, Black and Yellow Insect - Megarhyssa atrata
Minnesota, USA
June 10, 2009
Size: Approximately 5-6 inches
Discovered on top of a wood pile. I was told that this is an Ichneumon wasp. Google came up with the BugGuide, so I'm posting here to share the photo and get more specific information, as the Ichneumon classification seems quite general.

Images of this individual: tag all
Not Your Everyday, Ordinary, Black and Yellow Insect - Megarhyssa atrata Not Your Everyday, Ordinary, Black and Yellow Insect - Megarhyssa atrata

Yes...
Just to confirm this is M. atrata as Charley noted. These wasps are quite spectacular indeed.

Welcome to BugGuide!
You are right that the ichneumon classification is general; this is a family with about 3000 North American species. This particular one looks like Megarhyssa atrata to me (not an expert). You can read about it here. This is a female, and I believe she has just finished (or maybe is about to start?) laying eggs. She has a very long ovipositor that she inserts in wood to lay eggs near larvae of horntails (wood-boring wasp-like insects), which her larvae will parasitize. Nice shot!

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