I was on the phone the other night when this giant wasp like creature came flying toward me. This bitch was BIG with an even bigger stinger and as I backed away she just kept coming at me. I ran into the bathroom screaming like a girl and shut the door hoping she couldn’t bore through it with that jack-hammer hanging off her abdomen.
A few minutes later I snuck out and found she’d landed on a window. I grabbed the closest thing I could find that would reach her, the chuckit, and smacked her lightly (I did want to get a picture after all) and she fell to the floor. I went to scoop her up and she started crawling up the speaker so I hit her again. I know…brutal…but I’m telling you…this is one scary insect.
I scooped up the corpse, dropped it on the table outside and after grabbing my camera returned to find her gone. This bug is not only scary and ugly but tough too! Finding her on the chair I bludgeoned her once more and waited to see if she moved. She didn’t. I put her back on the table and took this picture.
I didn’t think to put anything in the picture to add perspective but I did measure her. Body – 1.25 inches, long frightening stinger thing – 1.5 inches, antennae – half an inch. Yep, more than three inches long and when flying toward your face nothing short of Mothra.
Of course now that I had a picture it was time to find out just what this thing is/was. It turns out this is an Ichneumon Wasp and that long frightening stinger thing isn’t a stinger at all. It’s an ovipositor and she uses it to deposit her eggs in larvae presently eating their way through our trees, or more likely the downed trees in the forest. Yikes!
So, it turns out I didn’t have to go running into the bathroom because this particular wasp is absolutely no threat to me. But this guy is lucky to be alive.
*This post is dedicated to my buddy Doug over at Gossamer Tapestry who could have stopped me from looking like such a sissy…but probably wouldn’t have. ; )