Chimeric hymenopteran


The insect that alighted on a leaf near me had the look of a chimera, a mythical beast assembled from the parts of other animals. It had a wasp’s head, a bee’s hairy body; and a butterfly’s clubbed antennae.

I was mystified.

It was a sawfly. 

Sawflies belong to Hymenoptera, the same order that contains ants, bees, and wasps. The common name, sawfly, comes from the saw-like ovipositor with which a female makes a slit in a plant to deposit eggs. The ensuing larvae then feed on the plant. Adults only live for about a week, so this sighting was serendipitous.

A Cimbicid Sawfly (Trichiosoma triangulum) has landed on a leaf in the forest and then lowered its abdomen to deposit eggs.


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3 Responses to Chimeric hymenopteran

  1. Karen Pidcock says:

    Would this be the insect which I hear often lately in the woods, usually coming from a deciduous tree, which makes a loud clicking sound, much like human finger nails against each other?

    If not, do you know what I’m hearing?


  2. Tina says:

    Click beetle

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