Pelecinus polyturator

Pelecinid Wasp

Pelecinus polyturator, Pelecinid Wasp photo, West Virginia

Family: Pelecinidae

Subfamily: Pelecininae


Pelecinus polyturator is found from Canada south to Uruguay and Argentina. The female has an extremely long and thin abdomen, used to probe the soil to find larval scarabs on which to oviposit. Males are seldom encountered; they have a much shorter abdomen which it swollen apically.

The family Pelecinidae contains only three species, all in the genus Pelecinus. The family is restricted to the Americas, with the other two species solely Neotropical. Pelecinus dichrous ranges from southeast Brazil to northern Argentina, while P. thoracicus is found in western Mexico.

Photo data (top two photos): 10 August 2020. Female. Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Tucker County, West Virginia.

Photo data (bottom photo): 9 August 2006. Female. Middle Island, Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge, Pleasants County, West Virginia. Elevation 183 meters.

Pelecinus polyturator female, long-abdomen wasp photo
Pelecinus polyturator female, Pelecinidae

This page is both the species page for Pelecinus polyturator and the family page for Pelecinidae