Image Credit: Alejandro Soffia

Cuckoo-wasps (Chrysididae) – parasitic on predators or pollenivores – Chrysidids parasitize 2 critically important pollinating flower-visitor groups – solitary wasps and solitary bees. Most species probably parasitize only other wasps, some only bees and several clearly attack both groups. They are able to generalize their host-preference because, even though the eggs are laid in the nest, the parasites feed upon the mature larva (and therefore don’t have to worry about the type of nest provisions).

Chrysid1 Chrysid2 chrysid3

Chrysidids are instantly recognized by their brilliant colors and the reduced number of apparent abdominal segments. Nearly all species have the integument heavily pitted.