Saturday, August 23, 2008

Red and Black beauty - A "Cow Killer" wasp

Jarod with the Cow Killer

My nextdoor neighbor, Jarod, loves spiders and insects! This morning I heard the doorbell ring and there was Jarod standing there with an empty Gatorade bottle containing this "Cow Killer", a.k.a. Velvet Ant. He had caught her at his soccer game. I transferred her to a bug container and had to wait until she dried to get the close-up photo.

It seems like lately all I am posting is venomous critters! :) This 1-inch long insect looks like a beautiful ant, but it is actually a wingless female wasp. She has a wicked sting, thus the common name "Cow Killer". Her red and black coloration is a warning that she is venomous.

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