Dedicated to the Study of the Cicadas of Massachusetts and New England


Sphecius speciosus in Topeka, KS

Sightings Category: Cicada Killers

Sphecius speciosus in Topeka, KS

Instead of trying to get more T. pruinosus, I found something that kills them instead! Anyway, this one was hanging out around some pepper plants, decided to capture it and take a few pictures. Unfortunately the pictures are not of great quality because I had to keep it in the jar since it was fluttering all over the place. Kept it for about five minutes then let it go.

Date Posted: 2012-07-22 Comments: (4) Show Comments Hide Comments


Posted By: Massachusetts Cicadas | On: 2012-07-25 | Website:

Hey Jimmy,

Thanks for sharing your cool photos. You should find the lek and look for the nesting mounds and watch the females bring in paralyzed cicadas.

This specimen is definitely a male. You could've reached in and picked the specimen up with your hand. Males have no stingers. Something most people do not know about cicada killer wasps. Thanks for sharing your photos with us.

Posted By: Jimmy Wu | On: 2012-07-26 | Website:

Unfortunately, I am not the best guy and determining the sex of cicada killers, how exactly to distinguish the male from the female without lightly pinning it down and seeing if it tries to whip out a stinger?

Posted By: Massachusetts Cicadas | On: 2012-08-01 | Website:

Hi Jimmy,

My apologies for the delay in responding. In addition to females being generally larger than males, females have 6 abdominal segments and males have 7.

Females have 10 segments to their antennae and males have 11 segments.

Finally females have very large tibial spurs on their hind legs. Males are very much smaller.

Hope that helps.

Posted By: Jimmy Wu | On: 2012-08-01 | Website:

Okay...thanks for the information.

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