Giant wasps of the Moscow region and Siberia

Giant wasps of the Moscow region and Siberia
Giant wasps of the Moscow region and Siberia

All wasps belong to the suborder Hymenoptera stinging insects. We often see them in home gardens and try to avoid close contact. After all, you don’t want to be stung! Now imagine that giant wasps are circling above you. Of course, their size is not the size of an eagle, but still they are larger than their relatives.

Judge for yourself, the length of an ordinary wasp reaches 10 millimeters, the wingspan is about 20 mm. The scolia wasp is gigantic in comparison! The size of her body ranges from 30 to 100 millimeters, the amplitude of the wings in flight is recorded from 30 to 60 millimeters.

Habitats for large wasps are land areas with a tropical and subtropical climate. There are approximately 25 species of these insects on the territory of the Russian Federation.

giant wasps in the suburbs


Giant wasps are usually black and yellow. The female has a dark abdomen, which seems to be constricted with transverse yellow plaques. Her wings shine with the soft color of an onion peel with a mother-of-pearl sheen. The female is usually larger and more aggressive than the male.

Scolia are considered predatory insects, and it is always interesting to follow themobserve. They begin their hunt by choosing a prey. It can be rhinoceros beetles, bronzovki, tree flies.

Having chosen the most opportune moment, giant wasps sting their prey in the abdominal nerve center. The victim is unable to move. After all, the sting of insects, like a sophisticated surgical instrument, paralyzes the motor activity of prey. The scolia wasp then calmly lays an egg in the abdomen of the prey. What happens next?

Next step

giant wasp photo

The soon hatched larva begins to eat the insides of the beetle. This lasts approximately 2 weeks. In the end, only the peel remains. Then it's time to spin the cocoon. It is curious that the little scolia correctly distributes all the threads. The whole process takes about a day.

The result is a cocoon in the form of an ellipse. Moreover, if the female wove, then its length is about 26 millimeters. In males, it is shorter - 17-18 millimeters. In this cocoon, the larvae spend the winter. In the spring, adults appear, which get out in search of food and reproduction. Giant wasps gorge themselves on flower nectar.

In parallel with this, mating occurs in adults. Not much time is allotted for love games. After mating, the female diligently digs a kind of mink for future prey. It has no corridors, entrances and exits. After all, the female scolia chooses a place for a mink that is never visited by someone. When the wasp comes out, the hole is closed with clods of earth. During the summer, the uterus is busylaying eggs and preparing food for the larvae.

These insects live in Central Asia, Crimea, North Africa and southern regions of Russia. Giant wasps in the Moscow region are a rare occurrence. Most likely, it may be due to the fact that some lover of exotic animals brought the winged ones. In this case, wasps can exist only in the conditions created for them. After all, the cold soil of Moscow land is detrimental to the larvae. Scolia, like other types of large wasps, are listed in the Red Book.

Giant wasps of Siberia

Hornet is another large representative of this genus. He stands out for his wasp waist, thin transparent wings and a powerful jaw. These insects have the brightest color. In addition to yellow and black, they also come in orange and brown.

There are more than 20 types of hornets in total. Their habitat is the Urals, east China, Ukraine. They can also be found in the northern part of Russia, where the locals call them "Siberian sparrows". They prefer to live in forests or choose lonely hills and other high places. Like other insects, giant hornet wasps live in colonies in nests. They are arranged horizontally, in the form of numerous honeycombs.

giant wasps of Siberia


Wasps are responsible for the construction of their homes. To begin with, they prepare the material - they chew wood fibers, wetting them abundantly with saliva. The nest itself consists of 7-8 cells. In each of them, you can count about 600 cells. Where do hornets make their nests? Most often in attics, under roofsabandoned houses, in birdhouses and in hollow trees. Sometimes insects settle in the burrows of small animals underground.

Besides nectar, giant wasps feed on tree sap, ripe fruits and berries. They, like skolii, are predators that easily deal with grasshoppers, locusts and flies. The most important is the uterus that survived the winter. In the spring, she wakes up, looks for a place for a nest, works on the combs and releases the first larvae from the laid eggs. Those, in turn, turn into worker hornets.

Patience and work

giant wasps of siberia

Who do you think falls into the group of real hard workers among insects? These are ordinary and giant wasps! The photo eloquently conveys their painstaking work. Hornets protect the home, feed the uterus and new larvae. As you can see, giant wasps have a pretty well-coordinated job. This is a good basis for growing the family.

New rows of combs are lining up and the nest is getting bigger. It is noteworthy that working hornets do not produce offspring, as they are sterile. But by the beginning of autumn, females appear in the family that are capable of reproduction. After mating with the drones, the wasps hide to wait out the long winter. The old queen and the males that have fulfilled their functions die. And the overwintered female in the spring again creates a new family.

Varieties of hornets

giant killer wasps

All these types of insects have similarities between themselves and other representatives of wasps. The oriental hornet is considered the most beautiful of all species. Hehas a bright red-brown color.

This is the only species that is resistant to the dry steppe climate. In addition, the female oriental hornet surpassed everyone with an impressive size in length - 24-30 centimeters! Insects live in the mountains of Sri Lanka, Japan, China and Korea.

Locals call them "tiger bees". There are absolutely black hornets. By the way, this species is often taken as a basis for creating computer insects for filming in feature films. They often feature giant killer wasps.

In reality, black hornets populate Chinese, Korean, Indian and Thai lands. Also found on Russian territory: in the Amur region, Transbaikalia and Primorye. This species is notable in that the female black hornet does not raise a family. She simply kills the queen in a pack of hornets of a different species and takes her colony under her leadership.

Benefits and harms

scolia giant wasp

All giant wasps are a kind of environmental orderlies. For example, scolia destroy insects that harm crops. It is known that whole colonies of hymenoptera are taken to reed fields to fight rhinoceros beetles. Also, large wasps eat wood flies and bugs that destroy the roots of fruit trees. In addition, insects amicably pollinate plants. Despite the fact that large species of wasps are beneficial, they are still contraindicated near a person's house.

Firstly, all insects look intimidating due to their size. Secondly,wasps have a highly toxic venom that is deadly to humans. Children and individuals suffering from allergic diseases are at risk. Multiple bites are especially dangerous.

A large amount of poison gets under the skin of a person and intoxication of the body occurs. The victim may experience headache, nausea, and chills. In severe cases, a person has convulsions and death. Therefore, admire unusual wasps only from a distance!

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