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Photo#492518
Polistes? - Polistes fuscatus

Polistes? - Polistes fuscatus
Sarasota County, Florida, USA
February 6, 2011
Size: 1 in.

Images of this individual: tag all
Polistes? - Polistes fuscatus Polistes? - Polistes fuscatus

Moved
Moved from Polistes.

Moved
Moved from ID Request.

Hmm...
I've seen other types of wasps and bees in this kind of position before. What I've seen is that they're usually killed by a fungus, like Cordyceps or others. They either have just the mandibles locked in, or they have their legs wrapped around an object and the mandibles in.

The coating on the joints, antennae and rest of the head lead me to this conclusion.

 
Hmm...
I was wondering what it might have died from. Interesting, I've never seen this before. Thank you for the response.

 
It does
It does seem like there is fungus exploding from various articulations between segments (such as tibia with tarsus).

 
Interesting
The only other image we have of a fungus-killed Polistes is also from Sarasota County, FL.

That one has obvious Cordyceps-type fruiting bodies. I don't know if this could be an earlier stage of the same thing, or something entirely different.

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