Campsomeris quadrimaculata Photo Fiona Sunquist ©
Scoliid wasps are some of the largest wasps in Florida—they can be 5 cms long, and have a wingspan of 6 cms. Shiny black with hairy legs they often have bright yellow or orange patterns on their body. Females of the species, Campsomeris quadrimaculata (photo above), have four orange-yellow spots.
Scolids are parasites of scarab beetle grubs. These wasps are often seen skimming the ground in a figure eight pattern, probably looking for grubs. Females dig into the sand to reach the grubs, then sting to paralyze the larva and lay an egg.
Scolid wasps have been used as ‘biological control’ agents for sugar cane grubs in Hawaii.
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