When is a Blue bee not a Blue bee? When it’s a Cuckoo Wasp.

Many thanks to Anna at Anna’s Bee World http://buzzybeegirl.wordpress.com/2009/07/. I found her great blog about her bee research after I had posted the drawing. She identified it immediately. If only I had googled “blue metallic “Wasp”” instead of “Bee”.

wonderful photo by D & K Kucharscy from Shutterstock.com
Family Hymenoptera: Chrysididae  Scientific name is from Greek, chryso, meaning “gold”, referring to the metallic golden coloration of some species’.

from the excellent site “What’s That Bug” http://www.whatsthatbug.com/

I always assumed wasps are slim waisted and more slender in general than this rather chunky one.
But there is no doubt about it. The pitted surface of the body and its habit of curling itself into a ball, confirm its identity. It has fewer body segments and a concave abdomen which allows it to roll itself up as protection against understandably irate hosts.
They are parasitic…on bees.
Hmmm..would you rather not have known that? But we all have to live. They are also called jewel wasps and come in many wonderful dazzling colours.
Thanks Anna.