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Photo#548662
Black and White Bee/wasp/Hornet?   - Bembix

Black and White Bee/wasp/Hornet? - Bembix
Eaton County, Michigan, USA
July 19, 2011
Black and white with yellow legs and this weird stinger? on its face. They were quite aggressive while I was picking in the garden, attacking myself and my dogs. (Several of them around 8-10 of them)

Images of this individual: tag all
Black and White Bee/wasp/Hornet?   - Bembix Black and White Bee/wasp/Hornet?   - Bembix

Moved
Moved from ID Request.

Harmless!
These are "sand wasps" in the genus Bembix. Females are solitary, but may excavate their burrows in dense aggregations with favorable soil. They kill flies that are much more of a health threat than the wasps themselves. Males may behave aggressively, defending territories and "harems" of females, but they cannot sting. The "stinger" on the face is merely a "tongue" used to sip flower nectar. Just ignore them. They won't sting unless you physically grab a female, or step on one in bare feet.

 
They cannot sting at all? Th
They cannot sting at all? They are in my garden and I have 2 bee allergic kids.

 
They CAN sting...
But rarely do so unless actually harmed or grabbed. Solitary or ground-nesting bees, wasps and hornets are very difficult or even impossible to control, so if you are really concerned you may have to barricade the area until they are finished breeding. If you eradicate them, they will eventually return and you may never see all of them. Otherwise, seek professional advice. If you are worried about your children's safety, that's the best way to go.

They are normally quite peaceful, and you actually have to pose a threat for them to sting. I think the only time your kids will be at risk is if they are near the nesting area or on it.

 
Thank you! Hopefully when we
Thank you! Hopefully when we go and pick again in the next day or so we won't do whatever it was to aggravate them. That bee in the picture followed me quite the distance as I was trying to get away from it.

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