The long red sting is that new weapon these wasps had, making us worry about. It’s stinger is not only exceptionally long but also wider when compared to previous species.

Researchers from the University of Turku in Finland recently discovered the Clistopyga crassicaudata, which lives between the Andes mountains and the Amazon rainforests. “I have studied tropical parasitoid wasps for a long time, but I have never seen anything like it,” said Ilari E. Sääksjärvi, a professor at the University of Turku. “The stinger looks like a fierce weapon.”

The species name, crassicaudata, referes the thickness of that stinger. Even one of the researchers who described the species said in a press release he’d never seen anything like it.

In 2012, scientists discovered a breed of giant, venomous wasps on the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia. The specimen belongs to the larrine wasp family, which dig their nests out in the open and then grow up to 2.5 centimeters.

“The stinger of the new parasitoid wasp called Clistopyga crassicaudata is not only long but also very wide, in comparison with the size of the species,” said Professor Ilari E. Sääksjärvi from the University of Turku. “I have studied tropical parasitoid wasps for a long time but I have never seen anything like it. The stinger looks like a fierce weapon.”

It’s sort of a dual-use syringe. It starts by harming the host, usually a spider, by injecting venom. Then it deposits its eggs on or into the spider’s body. When the larvae hatch, they eat the spider from the inside out.

“All female wasps, such as bees and hornets, have a stinger for injecting venom or laying eggs. The parasitoid wasps usually have a long ovipositor for laying eggs which are handy for reaching the host animals living inside a tree, for instance. With the ovipositor, the egg is placed either on or inside the host, and, as it also works as a stinger, the female wasp can inject venom into host in order to paralyze it.” Professor Sääksjärvi said.

“We do not know for sure which spider this wasp species prefers,” said Professor Sääksjärvi. “The giant stinger of the current species is very likely a highly sophisticated tool as well, but unfortunately we can only guess at its purpose.”

 

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