Bee hotel:
Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎

Last update: 5 January 2021
OBSERVATION:
2020-V-202020-V-172020-V-082015-VI-14

A group of insect that keeps a close eye on the bee hotels are the Carrot wasps (Gasteruptiidae), of which several species can be found.

The wasps in this post belong to the former Gasteruption assectator agg. group. The species in this group have a short ovipositor, a smooth appearance and a short nose [1].

They are kleptoparasites and the females use the ovipositor to lay eggs in the brood of bees. This wasp is a parasite of at least Ridge-Saddled Carpenter Bee (Heriades truncorum) [1].

Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎

The wasp will approach a nest cautiously and will flatten itself when the bee is still present in the nest and comes out of it, which is remarkable to observe.

Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎

Another female searching for a suitable host nest in the bee hotel.

Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎ (specimen 1)

She will smell if a nest is in use by positioning herself in front of the entrance and pointing her antennae towards it…

Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎ (specimen 1)

…or in it as this other female is showing.

Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎
Gasteruption assectator agg. ♀︎

I think these Carrot wasps are very beautiful and as described here they tickle my SciFi imagination 👽😄.


References

1 Kees van Achterberg, 2013. "de nederlandse hongerwespen (hymenoptera: evanioidea: gasteruptiidae)"

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