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Common Thread Waisted Wasp (Ammophila procera)


Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Common Thread Waisted Wasp.


 Updated: 2/22/2018; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.InsectIdentification.org



  Common Thread Waisted Wasp  
Picture of Common-Thread-Waisted-Wasp
Picture of Common-Thread-Waisted-Wasp Picture of Common-Thread-Waisted-WaspPicture of Common-Thread-Waisted-WaspPicture of Common-Thread-Waisted-WaspPicture of Common-Thread-Waisted-Wasp


The Thread-Waisted Wasp is an active hunter, searching for and paralyzing caterpillars and other insects in order to feed its offspring.





The incredibly narrow 'waist' on this wasp led to its name. The glossy black wasp has a bulging abdomen with a red or orange band near the hair-thin waist. Long, skinny legs are black and allow the wasp to hold onto vegetation while it watches for potential prey. Large, glossy eyes are black and on the sides of the head. Large mouth parts are on the front of the head.

The Thread-Waisted Wasp is an ambush attacker, immobilizing insect prey with a swift venomous sting. Its powerful jaws aid it in carrying or dragging the numb victim back to an underground lair. A relative of Mud Daubers, the Thread-Waisted Wasp builds a similar style of burrow in loose dirt. Inside, tunnels or cells are excavated and the paralyzed prey is tucked inside. One egg is laid on the alive-but-motionless food source, and when the egg hatches, the parasitic wasp larva begins consuming the paralyzed victim, eating nonessential parts first. By the time the meal is complete, the wasp has matured into adult form and flies away from the nest.

Adults drink flower nectar and feed on small insects they catch in the open. Since many plant-consuming caterpillars are taken as larvae food, this insect could be considered beneficial to gardeners and farmers. They are not known to be aggressive toward humans, though stepping on, or rough handling may result in a defensive sting.
Basic Information
Common Name: Common Thread Waisted Wasp
Scientific Name: Ammophila procera
Category: Bee, Ant, Wasp and Similar


General Identification
Size (Adult; Length): 16mm to 55mm (0.62in to 2.15in)
Colorwheel Graphic
Identifying Colors: black; yellow; orange; red
Additional Descriptors: flying, stinging




Taxonomic Hierarchy
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Sphecidae
Genus: Ammophila
Species: procera


Ant, Bee and Wasp Anatomy
Graphic showing basic anatomy of both a bee and an ant insect
1
Antennae: Ants and Bees both have a pair of antennae on the head that senses their surroundings.
2
Head: The head contains the insect's compound eyes, antennae, and mandibles.
3
Thorax: Contains various vital parts such as the aorta and nervous system.
4
Abdomen: Contains various organs including the heart, gut, venom glands, and anus.
5
Legs: Ants and Bees have three pairs of legs attached to the thorax (center-body section).
NOTE: Ants, Bees and Wasps are part of the Hymenoptera order because they share many similarities.


Territorial Reach (A-to-Z)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed below as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections below indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
Canadian National Flag Graphic
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland and Labrador
Nova Scotia
Ontario
Prince Edward Island
Quebec
Saskatchewan
Mexican National Flag Graphic
Mexico


Territorial Area Map (Visual Reference Guide)
The map below showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Common Thread Waisted Wasp may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data can be useful in seeing concentrations of a particular species over the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some species are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America.
Alaska  
Hawaii  
Prince Edward Is.  
State of Alabama graphic
State of Arizona graphic
State of Arkansas graphic
State of California graphic
State of Colorado graphic
State of Delware graphic
State of Florida graphic
State of Georgia graphic
State of Idaho graphic
State of Illinois graphic
State of Indiana graphic
State of Iowa graphic
State of Kansas graphic
State of Kentucky graphic
State of Louisiana graphic
State of Maine graphic
State of Maryland graphic
State of Michigan graphic
State of Minnesota graphic
State of Mississippi graphic
State of Missouri graphic
State of Montana graphic
State of Nebraska graphic
State of Nevada graphic
State of New England graphic
State of New Jersey graphic
State of New Mexico graphic
State of New York graphic
State of North Carolina graphic
State of North Dakota graphic
State of Ohio graphic
State of Oklahoma graphic
State of Oregon graphic
State of Pennsylvania graphic
State of South Carolina graphic
State of South Dakota graphic
State of Tennessee graphic
State of Texas graphic
State of Utah graphic
State of Virginia graphic
State of Washington graphic
State of West Virginia graphic
State of Wisconsin graphic
State of Wyoming graphic
Canadian territory of Alberta graphic
Canadian territory of British Columbia graphic
Canadian territory of Manitoba graphic
Canadian territory of New Brunswick graphic
Canadian territory of Newfoundland and Labrador graphic
Canadian territory of Ontario graphic
Canadian territory of Quebec graphic
Canadian territory of Saskatchewan graphic
Territory map graphic of the country of Mexico
Contiguous United States shape map layer graphic


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