What’s In a Name? Part 1 Cicada KillerPosted: August 1, 2020
These two inch long wasps are scary enough, but the name Cicada Killer makes one think twice about them. They have the less scary proper name of Sphecius speciosus. The giant wasp does kill cicadas, but otherwise ignores humans. I must have dozens of them this year. They fly close to the ground and I can stand among them as the large females circle around.
The calls from cicadas have lessened as the female Cicada Killers collect them to take into the 10 inch tunnels that are being dug in all my beds. Meanwhile, the males fly around and spar with each other and mate with the females.
I have found many more of these sandy nests around the yard this year compared to previous years. A few times I have seen a female go into a tunnel and once saw a wasp dive into the nest with a cicada which they lay their eggs on to feed their larva. While these wasps are pretty chill, I did see one chase a hummingbird away from her territory. Sadly, these big gals only live 60 to 75 days and their only goal in life is to reproduce.