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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/New flying insect in backyard


QUESTION: I was outside this morning and noticed a large group of flying insects in the backyard.  They were about one inch in size, had dark blue iridescent wings.  The head portion appeared black or a dark brown, there was a yellow stripe or spot halfway down body and the tail area was a rusty orange.  The had an irregular flight pattern and remain close to the ground , they would then land on the grass.  There were approximately 50-70 in the yard.  I'm located in south New Jersey if that helps.

ANSWER: Hi Cindy
Without seeing these I am at a loss here because there is a wide range of possibilities. Form the description and behavior they sound like some kind of bees or wasps. Google Hymenoptera and look at some photos. Let me know

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QUESTION: I was looking at images online and believe this was it.  It down poured today so I was unable to go out this morning.  Am I reading correct that this is a wasp?  If so what type?

Hi Cindy.
Thanks for the photo . This is a Spider Wasp. It Belongs to the Genus Anophilus. They prey on spiders that they sting and place in a mud nest to feed their young. Their sting is one of the worst of all wasps but if you do not bother them they will leave you alone.

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Walter Hintz


I can answer any questions about insects and spiders.


I have taught science for over 57 years. I am presently teaching biology at the college level. I have done extensive graduate work in entomology.

Momentum Magazine The Ohio Journal of Science

B.S. In Ed Kent State Unuv M.Sc The Ohio State Univ National Science Foundation Fellowships: Electron Microscopy Univ of California Entomology Kent State Univ

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