Category: sting

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Ah, how lovely small things can be.  

Here is a Torymus species (thanks Matt Buffington for the looky id while you were in the lab).  Often parasitizing gall forming wasps, you can see from its ovipositer that something interesting is happening out there in nature land.  This one was collected on Will’s Mountain in Maryland…most likely by Francis Mullan while on one of our expeditions.  Photo by Cole Cheng.

This is picture 7 from a 12 picture invited series by Matt Buffington (matt.buffington@usda.gov) at the USDA Parastitic Hymentoptera group using specimens from the U.S. Natural History Museum Smithsonian. Matt uses a system very similar to ours to photograph and stack this super tiny wasp.
This specimen of Oberthuerella lenticularis is in the USNM, and is over 100 years old!  Native to Madagascar, we don’t know what it uses its long ovipositor for, but we are sure its unpleasant for the recipient!

Sand Wasps at Guantanamo Bay.  

New type of military weapon?  

Nope.  But if you were a fly this bad girl would hunting you, and you would be very afraid.  These wasps are pretty much everywhere sand is.  Go to a volleyball court and look around the edges…look at patio blocks and they will be nesting between the pavers.  You see… you haven’t completely messed things up with your human activities.  

Fun wasp from Kruger National Park.  

Note the expanded antennal ends (actually the other antennae snapped off).  Most likely this is one of the pollen gathering wasps in Masserinae group. 

 So, you thought only bees in the stinging category of insects gathered pollen.  Nope.  However, in North America, these wasps mostly, if not entirely show up only in the West.

Honeybees, this is the bee that we all know, they give us honey, they are raised commercially, and we can point at the hives; to some people it seems to be the only bee in existence. But, as you know, there’s so much more, but so little information in the air about the other 4000 species on the continent. So, it turns out, that the best way to think about wild bees is to start with the premise that everything about honeybees is different in that everything about wild bees will be something new and those patterns in natural history will be both different from honeybees, but complex and varied across the pantheon of all wild bees and their thousands of years of evolution with plants.

Number 15 in the KNOW YOUR WILD BEES CAMPAIGN.

  • #5 The Sting of the Bee. More like a hypodermic needle…less like a fish hook. The KNOW YOUR WILD BEES campaign helps you at cocktail parties

The start of our new “Know Your Wild Bees Campaign”

All original pictures completely public domain and available at our Flickr site: https://www.flickr.com/photos/usgsbiml/

Photography Information: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-_yvIsucOY

Follow us on Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/usgsbiml/

Download our free field guide to the genera of bees:http://bio2.elmira.edu/fieldbio/beesofmarylandbookversion1.pdf

Public Bee Servant, sam droege

Let us present the first record of Bombus rufocinctus for the  state of Pennsylvania.   

This is a not uncommon northern and western species….it just hasn’t been found in PA as of yet.   

Some notes on its identification.  It has  very short face compared to other bumbles…a little light colored topknot of pale hairs above the ocelli…and very variable abdominal hair patterns…nearly all varieties of hair patterns can occur in a single colony of bumble bees…just to irritate biologists.  Pictures by Greta Forbes.  Bee capture by the state of Pennsylvania in Eire County.

All original pictures completely public domain and available at our Flickr site: https://www.flickr.com/photos/usgsbiml/

Photography Information: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-_yvIsucOY

Follow us on Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/usgsbiml/

Download our free field guide to the genera of bees:http://bio2.elmira.edu/fieldbio/beesofmarylandbookversion1.pdf

Public Bee Servant, sam droege