Last winter was mild here in western Washington, so I predicted a surge in yellowjackets and bald-faced hornets this summer. Sure enough, they are everywhere and I’m bracing for battle. Come autumn, when the wasps are looking for a treat, the honey bee colonies will be prime targets. Like bumble bee queens, mated yellowjacket and […] Read more
Speaking of wasps, I just received this photo from Nan at Shady Grove Farm in Kentucky. The white things you see attached to a tomato hornworm are the pupae of a braconid wasp. Using her ovipositor, the female braconid lays her eggs inside the body of the caterpillar. Once the eggs hatch, the larvae eat […] Read more
Where I grew up, the word “wasp” was uttered with derision and hate. A wasp was something to fear, to avoid, to kill. It was so bad, I can almost relate to the following incident. Recently, a visitor to this site wrote to ask if I could identify a bee she saw in her garden. […] Read more
This beautiful creature photographed by Andrew Hogg is not actually a “blue wasp” but a great black wasp, Sphex pensylvanicus. According to John Ascher of BugGuide.net, only the wings are blue. It belongs to the family Sphecidae, the thread-waisted wasps, and if you look carefully at the photo, you can see the very thin connection […] Read more
When I posted the photos from Andrew Hogg yesterday, I somehow overlooked this one. So here is it, front and center.