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Stinging_Cicada_01.pngCICADA KILLER

INTRODUCTION: This species which is most often mistaken for a hornet. It gets its name from the fact that it hunts and provision each of its nest cells with a cicada as food for its young.

RECOGNITION: Large, about 1-15/8” long, the body is black and strikingly marked with yellow markings, and wings are orange tint.

HABITS: Typically nest in sandy soil or bare ground. Many cicada killers use the same general area for nesting. Females in general will not sting unless handled or stepped on. Males will buzz people but cannot sting.

BIOLOGY: Cicada killers are solitary wasps. Each female digs her own burrow which is about 1/2" in diameter and may extend up to 10” deep. She then locates a cicada, stings it, and brings the paralyzed cicada back to the burrow. The lava feed on the paralyzed cicada, and over winters in their burrow, pupate in the spring, and emerge as adult in the summer, usually in July and August. Females will construct and provision many such burrows.

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CT Pest Control Association American Mosquito Control Association National Pest Management Association American Mosquito Control Association American Mosquito Control Association