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Insects and other arthropods

Sand wasp

English
Bembix americana

Tabs group

Description

These black wasps have greenish-yellow bands on their abdomens. Their legs are yellow, except for the parts nearest their bodies. Their wings are transparent, with brown veins. They are 13 to 16 mm long.

Life cycle

The solitary female digs a nest in sandy soil. She then goes hunting and brings her paralyzed prey back into the underground nest, to serve as food for the larva. After laying an egg on one of the prey, she plugs the end of the burrow with sand. The larva feeds and pupates inside a cocoon in the nest before emerging as an adult. 

Once her offspring has reached the pupa stage, the female digs another nest and lays another egg.

Geographic distribution

This species is found throughout North America, except on the Pacific coast.

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