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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/large flying insect resembling a wasp


An approximately 3" flying insect was bumping against my picture window for several minutes this afternoon.  It resembled a huge wasp, but nothing I have ever seen before.  In fact I think it was larger than 3 inches.  It was scary looking.  I have lots of wasps and yellow jackets around the house but have never seen anything like this ever (I am 73).


Without seeing at least an image of the insect in question, I can't offer a responsible guess as to its identity.  That said, cicada killers should be active now, and that could very well be what you saw:

Even the males are very large.  Males tend to be aggressive in defending their territories, but they are not anatomically capable of stinging.

Hope this helps.


Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Eric R. Eaton


I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.


Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

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One of the top 50 experts in all categories for, 2009.

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Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

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