There are many types of spider wasps, in different colors and species. But, most of the spider wasps are either blue or black. They have large wings that are usually colored blue, orangish yellow or black. They belong to the family Pompilidae, and the adult spider wasps are about half an inch to two inches in length. You can get basic information about spider wasp at www.bbc.co.uk/nature/life/Spider_wasp. In case you see a wasp of the above-described coloration and features with its wings flickering and grasping a spider; it is most probably a spider wasp. The wasps also have an antenna on their head. The antenna remains curled in shape.
Nature Of Diet And Behavior
The name spider wasp comes from the fact that they are efficient in hunting and killing spiders. They feed their offspring with these killed spiders. They survive by hunting down preys and taking it to their nests and feed their larvae that have just hatched from the eggs. Spider wasps only have one generation in a year.
The lifecycle of spider wasp is divided into four- egg stage, larvae stage, pupae stage and the adult stage. Its lifecycle begins annually by the spring season. By the winter season, the pupal turns into an adult spider wasp. Most of the spider wasps abode in ground burrows and hence the pupa is secured from the harsh cold climates as it remains safe and warm in burrows.
When the pupa turns into an adult, the female adult wasp emerges out of the burrow and begin hunting spiders. When it encounters a prey, the wasp attacks the prey and stings it. The sting paralyzes the spider but never lets it die. The wasp drags the paralyzed spider to its burrow and lays an egg on it. As the egg hatches, the larvae grow by eating the spider. An adult wasp never feeds on spiders. It instead feeds on the nectar of plants to survive.
Spider wasps often live in solitude and not as groups. They do not have an aggressive nature and prefer to run or fly away from us. They rarely sting others. Sting is mainly used for attacking spiders. They are meek, self-reliant creatures that prefer solitude. Hence, a homeowner can at the most encounter one spider wasp and not more than that. It is better to let the spider wasp escape as it won’t attack or sting anyone.
If you still feel the need to control the wasps, you can take your garden hose and spray water on it. This will drive it off your property. You can also swat it with a fly swat or a rolled newspaper. It is better not to use insecticides as honey bees can take up the remains and carry it to their hives. Expert assistance can be provided by pest control experts.
Dealing With Stings
Usually, a spider wasp doesn’t sting people. It often prefers to run away or fly off from humans. It might accidentally sting you if you unknowingly step on them barefoot. In case the wasp stings anyone, the venom is a mild one and produces only a minor sense of discomfort. If you find any stinging insects in your home or nearby areas, it is better to contact a pest control expert.