08.03.2022 Wasp Wednesday

Two Ichneumonid wasps from the yard.

Great Golden Digger Wasp-Sphex ichneumoneus.  The digger moniker comes from their habit of nesting in the ground and laying an egg in each cell then leaving an orthopteran (grasshopper, locust, katydid, etc) in there for the larva to feed upon. One way we avoid having a plague of locusts, I guess.

Another Ichneumonid wasp-Trogus pennator. This species rears its young by parasitizing the larvae of various swallowtail butterflies.  Hopefully none of the offspring of the ones I shared yesterday.

Look at those beautiful eyes!  The three in the center are the Ocelli, simple eyes as compared to the larger compound eyes. Compound eyes resolve detail while the Ocelli sense light and movement.


About Steve Gingold

I am a Nature Photographer with interests in all things related. Water, flowers, insects and fungi are my main interests but I am happy to photograph wildlife and landscapes and all other of Nature's subjects.
This entry was posted in Amherst, Closeup Photography, Insect Behavior, Insects, Nature Photography, Western Massachusetts and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to 08.03.2022 Wasp Wednesday

  1. picpholio says:

    Let’s hope that the first one will never disappear….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gallivanta says:

    Beautiful eyes, indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The wasp’s three ocelli might be an analog of the pineal gland in humans and other vertebrates whose production of melatonin is stimulated by darkness and inhibited by light.


  4. Eliza Waters says:

    Yeah, it’s a bug-eat-bug world out there! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. shoreacres says:

    Those three simple eyes suddenly reminded me of my photo of the Green Lynx spider. Sure enough, I read that the funny cluster on top of its head also contains eyes of some sort. I’ll have to explore more later, and see if I have a decent image of them. All this time, I thought they were decoration.. Eyes dedicated to sensing light and movement certainly would benefit a spider.

    Liked by 1 person

    • All those eyes enable a spider to get a better view of their surroundings since they can’t move their head. Little in Nature is for decoration and pretty much everything has purpose.Even decoration has the purpose of attracting a mate or disguising someone from a predator.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Great Wasp images Steve! Love the detail in your images!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ann Mackay says:

    Fantastic photographs – you’ve captured so much detail!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Great details! Your last shot is fabulous! Those wings!!

    Liked by 1 person

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