Ichneumon Wasps

Ichneumon wasps are a parasitoid wasp family. They can look concerning, but unlike the social wasps who have stings ichneumonids have ovipositors instead of stingers, and they are all solitary.

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Ichneumon wasps, like other wasps, have a slender waist, two pairs of wings, a pair of large compound eyes. Their size varies considerably from a few millimetres to seven or more centimetres. They do not have stings but can have large ovipositors for laying eggs in their hosts. These ovipositors are often mistaken for stings and cause concern to gardeners.


Ichneumon wasps are not pests and help control many pest species because they are parasitiods of the larvae of beetles, wasps, moths and butterflies. They lay their eggs in the larvae and the larvae feed on the grubs.

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