Friday, August 1, 2008

Herculean Effort

was kept prisoner in her own garden by ginormous wasps.  Wasps that were nearly 2 inches long and formidable looking, to say the least.  I was able to ID the flying monster for her and assure her they had no interest in her, whatsoever.  They are hunting cicadas, and only cicadas--thus the name: Cicada Killer.  In fact, you would have to really mess with one to get it to sting you.  Humans just aren't on their radar. 

A Cliff's Notes version of this wasp and it's prey:
CK female digs a very deep hole in soft ground, where she lays her egg.
She then hunts cicadas by day, when the cicadas are sleeping.
Cicada Killer locates and stings cicada.
Both fall to the ground and the cicada becomes paralyzed.
CK drags her victim to a flat, debris free spot and actually becomes airborn with the cicada.
CK, after many attempts, gets cicada back to her hole in the ground. 
She leaves the  cicada, still alive but paralyzed, in the hole for her newborn to feed on. 
The End

What amazes me, is that it's obvious that the cicada has got to weigh as much as the Killer, maybe more.  
I'm trying to upload a video, but having trouble.  Maybe later today.  
Update: I've added the video.  It's link is below this picture.


  1. Thanks for the update CeeCee. I was sitting in my garden the other day when one landed on one of my sunflowers. I just sat and watched it, and then it flew away. The CKs out here look a little different than that one you took video of.

    (Your video totally cracked me up!)

    Thanks again for the info. I love learning new things about nature and how my little garden fits into it.

  2. Very interesting. I have never seen one of those and the video was great.

  3. We've had these in our yard. They are pretty scary when they fly at you!