Eastern Cicada Killer

Amos and I discovered an Eastern Cicada Killer (Sphecius speciosus) female attempting to carry away her prey this weekend outside of my apartment in Savannah, GA.  Cicada Killers are solitary wasp parasitoids that sting prey, paralyzing it, and drag it to pre-made burrows, where they will lay an egg on the incapacitated prey item for their larvae’s consumption.  This seems absolutely terrifying, especially given that this wasp is a couple of inches long…

The wasp seemed to have taken a cicada that was a bit too large for it; it was struggling to carry it off, and eventually left the paralyzed cicada, possibly because of the dual harassment from my photographing and Amos’s barking.

 

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