Fans of sandy soil, the Thread-waisted Wasps from the Ammophila genus use the loose earth to house their offspring.
Incredibly narrow waists are a standard feature on Thread-waisted Wasps. Female Thread-waisted. Some have red bodies and black wings. Others are completely black. This type of wasp is a solitary creature. After mating, females dig small caverns into the ground using their legs and jaws. Inside the hole, an egg is laid and a plump, paralyzed caterpillar 'pillow' is placed inside with it. Once the wasp larva hatches, it consumes the immobile, living caterpillar. After a cavern has been filled, the female covers it with compacted soil to hide her treasure while it grows and develops.
Adults drink flower nectar and can be found roaming over the ground in arid and semi-arid regions. They are active during the day and can sting in defense if threatened, but they are not considered aggressive.
Scientific Name: Ammophila spp.
Other Name(s): Sand Wasp
Bee, Ant, Wasp and Similar
Size (Adult; Length): 18mm to 25mm (0.70in to 0.98in)
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 above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections 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.
Ant, Bee, and Wasp Anatomy
Antennae: Ants and Bees both have a pair of antennae on the head that senses their surroundings.
Head: The head contains the insect's compound eyes, antennae, and mandibles.
Thorax: Contains various vital parts such as the aorta and nervous system.
Abdomen: Contains various organs including the heart, gut, venom glands, and anus.
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.