This page contains pictures and information about Flower Wasps in family Tiphiidae
found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
- Species in this Tiphiidae family are known as Flower Wasps. They are
from small to medium in size. They are all solitary wasps. They can be
recognized by the slender body. Males are usually dark
brown to black in colours marked with yellow. Males and females may
look very different. Females of the major Australian subfamily Thynnine
are wingless. They have small eyes with short curled antennae and usually
- Their larvae parasite on soil-dwelling insects
such as burrowing beetles
larvae and mole crickets.
They pupate inside host body. The female Flower Wasps has to burrow through the soil
to find the host and lay an egg on it. The female legs are modified for
digging. For species in subfamily Thynnine, the females' wings are lost.
- However, the female wasps, as the male wasps, are feed on
nectar and have to visit flowers. Wingless is a big disadvantage. Flower Wasps
a mating behaviour which the males help the females on feeding. Their mating time is very
long. It is common to see a male Flower Wasp carrying a wingless female, with
tail to tail attached, flying between flowers. The transportation is part of
the mating procedures.
- Despite they are wingless, female flower wasps will sting if disturbed.
- Most species are in subfamily Thynnine which the females are wingless.
Females in other sub-families are winged. The wingless females have the
shiny and smooth body which distinguished from those wingless females in
- Thynnine is the largest subfamily in Tiphiidae in Australia. Species in
this subfamily Thynnine are dark and often marked with brightly coloured.
Males are fully winged and usually larger than the females. Females are
wingless and mostly dark colour without bright markings. Larvae are
parasitoids on the larvae of Scarab
- Yellow Flower Wasp
- Agriomyia sp., winged male 20mm, wingless female 15mm
- We took those pictures when the winged male carrying the non-winged female
flying between grasses while they were mating. More information and pictures
please check this page.
- White-banded Flower Wasp
- Epactiothynnus sp., body length 15mm
Wingless female 15mm
- On Jan 2009 in Brisbane Koala Bushlands near Burbank, we saw two male
flower wasps looking for something on the sandy forest floor. We believed
they sensed the smell of female flower wasp. Please check this page
for more details.
- White-collared Flower Wasp
- Tachyphron armidalensis, winged male 15mm
- The winged male is black in colour with a broken white line on prothorax.
The wingless female is dark brown in colours. Pictures taken on Dec 2009 In Anstead Forest. Please
check this page for more
- Brown Flower Wasp
- ? Gymnothynnus sp, winged male 15mm, wingless female 8mm
- We saw a wasp landed and rested on a dry grass with its abdomen tip
attached with something. Looked a bit closer we found that the attachment
was a wingless wasp. Then we understand it must be a flower wasps mating
pairs. They flied away after we took a few photos. More pictures and
information can be found in this page.
- Steel-black Flower Wasp
- Thynnoides sp., winged male 15mm, wingless female 10mm
- Both the winged male and wingless female of Steel-black Flower Wasp are
steel-blue in colours. Please check this page
for more information.
- Brown-black Flower Wasp
- Photo: Keith Power, Toowoomba
- ? Tachynomyia sp., winged male body length 15mm
- The above picture was taken in Yimbin Park on July 2009. Please check this
page for more information.
- Yellow-antenna Flower Wasp
- ? Anthobosca sp., body length 20mm
- This wasp is commonly seen searching on tree trunk. It is black in colour
with yellow antenna. Please check this page
for more information.
- Small Black Flower Wasp
- ? Anthobosca sp., body length 15mm
- Pictures were taken on Dec 2003. Click here
for more infomation.
- 1. Insects
of Australia, CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University
Press, 2nd Edition 1991, pp 977.
- 2. Insects of Australia and New Zealand - R. J. Tillyard, Angus
& Robertson, Ltd, Sydney, 1926, p293.
- 3. What wasp is that? - An interactive identification guide to the Australasian families of Hymenoptera, 2007.
- 4. Northern Territory Insects, A Comprehensive Guide CD - Graham Brown, 2009.
- 5. Specimen Image Index - ICDB, ENTOMOLOGY AT DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WESTERN AUSTRALIA
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