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Scientists Discover a New (and Scary) Parasitoid Wasp Species

Columbia pest control

Wasps tend to mind their own business, but every once in awhile, they can attack, and being stung by a wasp isn’t fun. If you’re someone who’s already afraid of wasps, our Columbia pest control company has some bad news…

Recently, scientists from the University of Turku in Finland discovered a new species of Amazonian wasp that’s designed to be twice as destructive as other common wasp species.

The Clistopyga crassicaudata is technically a parasitoid wasp, and has a stinger that’s about half the size of its body length. This means that this wasp’s giant stinger is used for two things:

In an article from CNN, AJ Willingham says, “Clistopyga stingers aren’t just for stinging. They’re also for stunning and killing spiders as incubation hosts, wrapping them up in their own webs, and injecting them with wasp eggs. So those giant stingers are poison darts, ovipositors, crochet needles, battering rams and bayonets all in one.”

Pretty scary, right?

The good news is that wasps with stingers this long typically can’t sting humans, as their stingers are too flimsy. When it comes to other insects, however, most don’t have the same advantage. According to the University of Maryland, this isn’t exactly a bad thing, as parasitoid wasps are important for controlling other pest populations; certain wasps can be used to control the number of filth flies, aphids, and scale insects.

While parasitoid wasps are already unique, they make themselves even more unique by avoiding social groups, hunting for prey, and living solitarily, apart from mating.

In the same article, Ilari E. Sääksjärvi, a professor at the University of Turku, says, “…I hope that with these interesting new species, which are highly different in comparison with other species, we can draw attention to the little known but extremely vulnerable habitats or ecosystems where they live. We hope that these finding can be of use, [for example] in the conservation of these areas.”

While you probably won’t have to worry about a Clistopyga crassicaudata infestation, other pest infestations can be an issue. Whether you’re dealing with wasps, ants, spiders, termites, or another pest, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with our Columbia pest control company. We’ll take care of your problem.
*Photo courtesy of the University of Turku

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