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a Wyandot county resident... #147430 - Ask Extension

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a Wyandot county resident... #147430

Asked August 16, 2013, 9:07 AM EDT

a Wyandot county resident was wondering what this insect was? is there anyway to kill them? we thought it might be a ground hornet.. thanks! I have additional pictures if needed

Wyandot County Ohio

Expert Response

This is the common cicada killer wasp.  The females dig burrows in the ground, find annual cicadas, sting them and drag them back to the burrow. In the burrow, the paralyzed wasp is placed in a chamber and the wasp attaches an egg. The egg hatches into a white grub-like larva which consumes the cicada.  Sounds like a horror movie! The males can be a bit aggressive in protecting places where "their" females are nesting! Fortunately, the males have no stingers.  While the wasp can deliver a painful sting, she won't do so unless you try to pick her up! If you are really annoyed by them, the over-the-counter wasp and hornet sprays will work if you actually hit the wasp. I've trained golf course superintendents to hire kids armed with tennis rackets to whack these wasps. They often burrow into the sand bunkers and annoy players.
David Shetlar Replied August 17, 2013, 11:22 PM EDT

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