Sunday, 5 February 2017

Velvet Ant

A Velvet Ant Mutillidae, photographed on the ranger's driveway in Ben Boyd NP.
Very little is known about Australian velvet ants. This one is female, being wingless. Apparently the females pack a powerful punch with their sting. Although they resemble ants, they are closer to wasps in their taxonomy and lifestyle. They are parasites of wasps, most often found on sandy ground and walls searching for both solitary and social wasp or bee nest holes.

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1 comment:

chm said...

The muscles joining head to thorax to abdomen must be extremely strong so the insect doesn't fall apart.

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