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Species Anoplius apiculatus

Pompilidae - Anoplius - Anoplius apiculatus Pompilidae - Anoplius - Anoplius apiculatus Anoplius apiculatus - female Xero-like female - Anoplius apiculatus - female Xero female - Anoplius apiculatus - female Blue-Black Spider Wasp - Anoplius apiculatus
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 Pompiloidea (Spider Wasps, Velvet Ants and allies)
Family Pompilidae (Spider Wasps)
Subfamily Pompilinae
Tribe Pompilini
Genus Anoplius (Blue-Black Spider Wasps)
No Taxon (Subgenus Arachnophroctonus)
Species apiculatus (Anoplius apiculatus)
This species is polytypic, containing three subspecies.
~6-14 mm (females>males).
Usually covered with a short, appressed silvery pubescence. This pubescence forms a line on the rear edge of the pronotum.
The first three abdominal segments are marked with orange.
They possess a tarsal comb.
Wings are weakly infuscate, having a darker terminal band.
Not at all hairy.
Third submarginal cell usually not petiolate.
Abdomen virtually without shininess; mesosternum without a spiniform process (separates it from Anoplius semirufus.
Transcontinental. Subspecies have different ranges. A. a. apiculatus is found in the west, A. a. autumnalis is found mainly in the east and eastern Great Plains, and A. a. pretiosus is found mainly on the eastern coastal plain.
This species is found almost exclusively in sandy habitats, often close to water (beaches and sand dunes).
Summer and early autumn.
Adults uncommonly visit flowers, usually umbellifers.
Life Cycle
Females provision nests with spiders of the family Lycosidae. They are fossorial; they have very long comb-spines on the front tarsi as an adaptation to this.
Some useful comments here and here.
See Also
Anoplius semirufus. Probably not separable in the field. May be separable with good photos.
Print References
See Krombein et al., 1979 [cite:61558] for notes on distribution and prey records.
See Evans, 1951 (A taxonomic study of the nearctic spider wasps belonging to the tribe pompilini, Part II. Trans. Amer. Entomol. Soc., 76: 207-361) [will probably post as a book later]