Mud Wasps

Euodynerus foraminatus
European Tube Wasp (Ancistrocerus gazella)
Parancistrocerus leionotus
Euodynerus hidalgo ssp. boreoorientalis

Three out of four of these Potter and Mason Wasps (Subfamily Eumeninae) don’t have common names, suggesting they are sadly under-known. The one that does is an introduced species that’s been in North America for at least 60 years. Potter wasps build free-standing nests out of mud. Mason wasps use mud to line and seal wooden cavities–they may well show up at your “bee hotel.” They all provision their larvae with caterpillars, sometimes beetle larvae. As in many carnivorous wasps species, the adults actually eat nectar. Two years ago, I observed some caterpillar-hunting action.

Back in April, when I had what amounted to a preview of spring by traveling down to Virginia, I saw this Fraternal Potter Wasp (Eumenes fraternus). Haven’t seen any in Brooklyn yet, but I expect to soon.

According to my handy life list, the list of all the wild life I’ve seen, I have spotted 17 species of Eumeninae in Brooklyn, NY.

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