[The following is an invited post by Alex Wild of Myrmecos blog]
Little did Ted know that giving me the keys to his beetle blog meant I’d be able to use his own soapbox to convince everyone that Hymenoptera (the ants, bees, and wasps) are just waaaayyyyy cooler than Coleoptera.
Meet Leucospis. This colorful insect, about a centimeter in length, is a parasite of wood-nesting bees and wasps. In this photo she is drilling down through a leafcutter bee nest to lay her egg in one of the bee’s sealed cells. There, her larva will consume the developing bee.
Leucospid wasps aren’t terribly common, so I was rather surprised to see this one on my front porch in downtown Urbana.