Gasteruption jaculator

Gasteruption jaculator

''Gasteruption jaculator'' is a species belonging to the family Gasteruptiidae subfamily Gasteruptiinae.
Gasteruption jaculator - full body view, Netherlands Presumed species. A few days ago, I granted myself a 15 minute sunbath in the garden. But of course, even in such a rare moment of relaxation, the natural world called for my attention. The red on this insect caught my eye.

It's sitting on our shed in which we store garden tools. The shed is poorly maintained and the wood has several holes in it which are thankfully used by several bee species and hover flies as a nest. Good, because I'm employing several tactics in our garden to promote insect populations. 

Before grabbing the camera I first watched it (there were three of them) for a good 15 minutes. It generally crawled around the open holes as if to somehow detect a target or to decide on its next move. Every few minutes, it would make a move and reverse itself (ovipositor first) into the hole. I suppose it then deposited her eggs. The parasitic behavior of species in this genus is diverse; eggs can be deposited on the larvae of a host, but also near it. Other behavior is to deposit them near or on the food supply of the host.

The adult feeds on nectar, and you can see how its body is covered in it. In dutch, we call these insects "hunger wasps". I first assumed this is related to the appetite of its larvae, which parasite both a host and its food supply. No, the name comes from the extremely thin waist (metasoma), which even for a parasitoid wasp is unusually thin.

I'm happy to see and learn about this species, as I appreciate its beauty. I'm not terrible happy in it targeting bee populations, but I will let nature have its way.

https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61278/gasteruption_jaculator_-_closeup_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61279/gasteruption_jaculator_-_top_view_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61280/gasteruption_jaculator_-_head_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61281/gasteruption_jaculator_-_top_view_closeup_netherlands.html
 Europe,Gasteruption jaculator,Heesch,Netherlands,World

Appearance

The head and thorax are completely black. The head is strongly rounded, the thorax is elongated in a sort of long neck , which separates the head from the body. Also the abdomen is strongly stretched, broader at the posterior end and placed on the upper chest . The colour of the abdomen is black, with reddish-orange rings. The tibiae of the hind legs are club shaped. In the female the ovipositor is usually very long with a white tip. In resting position, these wasps slowly and rhythmically raise and lower the abdomen.
Gasteruption_jaculator  Fall,Gasteruption jaculator,Geotagged,Greece

Distribution

This species is mainly present in Austria, Belgium, Great Britain, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, in the East Palearctic ecozone and in the Near East.
Gasteruption jaculator - top view closeup, Netherlands Presumed species. A few days ago, I granted myself a 15 minute sunbath in the garden. But of course, even in such a rare moment of relaxation, the natural world called for my attention. The red on this insect caught my eye.

It's sitting on our shed in which we store garden tools. The shed is poorly maintained and the wood has several holes in it which are thankfully used by several bee species and hover flies as a nest. Good, because I'm employing several tactics in our garden to promote insect populations. 

Before grabbing the camera I first watched it (there were three of them) for a good 15 minutes. It generally crawled around the open holes as if to somehow detect a target or to decide on its next move. Every few minutes, it would make a move and reverse itself (ovipositor first) into the hole. I suppose it then deposited her eggs. The parasitic behavior of species in this genus is diverse; eggs can be deposited on the larvae of a host, but also near it. Other behavior is to deposit them near or on the food supply of the host.

The adult feeds on nectar, and you can see how its body is covered in it. In dutch, we call these insects "hunger wasps". I first assumed this is related to the appetite of its larvae, which parasite both a host and its food supply. No, the name comes from the extremely thin waist (metasoma), which even for a parasitoid wasp is unusually thin.

I'm happy to see and learn about this species, as I appreciate its beauty. I'm not terrible happy in it targeting bee populations, but I will let nature have its way.

https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61277/gasteruption_jaculator_-_full_body_view_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61278/gasteruption_jaculator_-_closeup_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61279/gasteruption_jaculator_-_top_view_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61280/gasteruption_jaculator_-_head_netherlands.html Europe,Gasteruption jaculator,Heesch,Netherlands,World

Behavior

The females of this parasitic wasp lays its eggs by its long ovipositor on the body of larvae of solitary bees or wasps. On hatching its young larvae will devour grubs and supplies of pollen and nectar of its victim. The adults grow up to 10–17 millimetres long and can mostly be encountered from May through September feeding on Apiaceae species.
Gasteruption jaculator - closeup, Netherlands Presumed species. A few days ago, I granted myself a 15 minute sunbath in the garden. But of course, even in such a rare moment of relaxation, the natural world called for my attention. The red on this insect caught my eye.

It's sitting on our shed in which we store garden tools. The shed is poorly maintained and the wood has several holes in it which are thankfully used by several bee species and hover flies as a nest. Good, because I'm employing several tactics in our garden to promote insect populations. 

Before grabbing the camera I first watched it (there were three of them) for a good 15 minutes. It generally crawled around the open holes as if to somehow detect a target or to decide on its next move. Every few minutes, it would make a move and reverse itself (ovipositor first) into the hole. I suppose it then deposited her eggs. The parasitic behavior of species in this genus is diverse; eggs can be deposited on the larvae of a host, but also near it. Other behavior is to deposit them near or on the food supply of the host.

The adult feeds on nectar, and you can see how its body is covered in it. In dutch, we call these insects "hunger wasps". I first assumed this is related to the appetite of its larvae, which parasite both a host and its food supply. No, the name comes from the extremely thin waist (metasoma), which even for a parasitoid wasp is unusually thin.

I'm happy to see and learn about this species, as I appreciate its beauty. I'm not terrible happy in it targeting bee populations, but I will let nature have its way.

https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61277/gasteruption_jaculator_-_full_body_view_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61279/gasteruption_jaculator_-_top_view_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61280/gasteruption_jaculator_-_head_netherlands.html
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/61281/gasteruption_jaculator_-_top_view_closeup_netherlands.html Europe,Gasteruption jaculator,Heesch,Netherlands,World

Habitat

''Gasteruption jaculator'' has been found visiting various flowers, or hovering around the nests of solitary bees and wasps in gardens and meadows. The species is commonly found during May to September.

References:

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Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionArthropoda
ClassInsecta
OrderHymenoptera
FamilyGasteruptiidae
GenusGasteruption
SpeciesG. jaculator
Photographed in
Greece
Netherlands