Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Species Triscolia ardens

Wasp? - Triscolia ardens Wasp? - Triscolia ardens Hymenoptera-Scoliadae-Triscolia ardens ? - Triscolia ardens ?mutillid - Triscolia ardens - - Triscolia ardens - female large velvet ant? - Triscolia ardens - female Fuzzy, black & orange pollinator - Triscolia ardens - female Triscolia ardens? - Triscolia ardens
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)
Superfamily Scolioidea
Family Scoliidae (Scoliid Wasps)
Tribe Scoliini
Genus Triscolia
Species ardens (Triscolia ardens)
Other Common Names
Fire-tailed Scoliid Wasp
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Triscolia ardens (Smith, 1855)
= Scolia Montezumae Saussure, 1857
= Scolia ardens Smith, 1855
= Scolia fervida Burmeister, 1853 - preoccupied by Scolia fervida Smith, 185 (junior synonym of Scolia cruenta Klug, 1810)
Explanation of Names
Triscolia ardens (Smith, 1855)
ardens = from the Latin ārdens ('burning, fiery, shining, brilliant, eager, passionate, ardent')
♀ forewing 19.8 mm; body length 23.4 - 26.5 mm(1)
♂ forewing 19.1 mm; body length 23.6 - 23.9 mm(1)
(Noticeably larger than S. dubia haematodes.)
Forewing with three submarginal cells and a single recurrent vein which meets the posterior edge of the 2nd submarginal cell (see diagram here).(2) Wings very dark, violaceous; thorax entirely black; first two abdominal tergites mostly black, the remaining (posterior) tergites red and more bushy-hairy.(3)
Males have a pseudostinger with three narrow spines projecting slightly beyond the tip of abdomen; females lack such spines.
TX, NM, AZ, CA; and south into Mexico.(3)(4)
Desert, e.g. the Mojave and Colorado deserts of California(5)
June to November
Triscolia ardens is presumably the model for the dipteran mimic Mydas ventralis.
See Also
Scolia dubia haematodes is nearly identical in coloration but is separated in terms of wing venation and a smaller size.

Comparison of wing venation between Scolia (left) and Triscolia (right). The genus Scolia has 2 submarginal cells whereas the genus Triscolia has 3 submarginal cells.
Print References
Betrem J.G., Bradley J.C. (1964). Annotations on the genera Triscolia, Megascolia and Scolia (Hymenoptera, Scoliidae). Zoologische Mededelingen 40: 89-96. (Full text)
Works Cited
1.The Scoliidae wasps (Hymenoptera: Scolioidea) of Mexico: taxonomy and biogeography
Luis Damián Ramírez Guillén, Armando Falcon-Brindis, & Benigno Gómez. 2022. Zootaxa, 5214(1):47-88.
2.Grissell (2013): Scoliid Wasps of Florida
3.Scoliid Wasps of the Southwestern United States
MacKay W.P. 1987. Southwestern Naturalist 32(3): 357-362.
4.Catalog of Hymenoptera in America North of Mexico
Karl V. Krombein, Paul D. Hurd, Jr., David R. Smith, and B. D. Burks. 1979. Smithsonian Institution Press.
5.The Scoliidae of California
Hurd P.D. 1952. Bull. Calif. Insect Survey 1(6): 141-152.