Is there an insect in your home that resembles a fly in appearance but isn’t quite? It will be dark, but the startling feature is the triangular flag-like abdomen that protrudes from the top.
When I tell people not to squish this “strange house fly,” they look at me as if I’m a crazed maniac. As ensign wasps, they assist control cockroach numbers in the home.
In the egg cases of cockroaches, known as oothecas, the female ensign wasps look for a place to lay an egg. Larva will eat the wasp’s egg when it hatches, including the egg it was laid in. The larval instars consume the other eggs in the egg case as food. It develops into an adult wasp after pupating in a cockroach egg sac.
Humans have never been stung by these wasps.
What should you do if you find one in your home? Cockroaches should take precedence over the wasp.
An estimated $16.2 billion will be spent on pest control in the US in 2020, according to a new report. You and your family could be put at risk by a bug infestation. They are recognized disease carriers, and some of them can even cause structural damage to your house if you don’t take care of them.
The problem is that not every insect is a nuisance. A pest is an animal or bug that is harmful to humans, plants, animals, or the environment as a whole, or that causes a nuisance and is detrimental in its own right. Ensign wasps, for example, are useful to have around because they pollinate flowers.
Read on to find out more about the ensign wasp and how it can help you in your daily life.
What is an Ensign Wasp?
Ensign wasps, which seem like flies but aren’t, can be found in your home if you’ve ever seen one. Insects with triangular and flag-like abdomens, known as hatchet wasps, are black in hue. As their abdomens rise and fall, they appear to be signaling with a flag, which is why they’re known as ensign wasps.
Aphids drop nectar and honey dew on plants, which these insects (from the Evaniida family) consume. Adults can grow up to 3/4 inch in length.
How are Ensign Wasps Beneficial?
There is no evidence to suggest that the ensign wasp stings or harms humans or pets in any manner. Squishing an ensign wasp isn’t a good idea because of this. Cockroach infestations can be controlled by hatchet wasps while they multiply.
Roaches are one of the most difficult pests to get rid of completely because they are so adaptable. This is due to the fact that even after killing the roaches, their eggs might remain dormant for months before hatching. Ensign wasps come into play here. To lay her eggs, a female hatchet wasp seeks for cockroach egg cases, known as ootheca in the trade.
The cockroach eggs in the case will be eaten by the larva of an ensign wasp when it hatches from its egg. When the larva pupates, it will emerge as an adult.
What Does the Presence of an Ensign Wasp Signify?
It is common for ensign wasps to eat near sites where they can lay their eggs. Cockroach egg cases or even adults may be present if one is found in your home. Allow an ensign wasp to exterminate your roaches for free if you see one. It is important, however, that you take action. In the cracks and crevices, look for roach ootheca and other telltale indicators. The use of ensign wasps in the future can help to keep pests at bay.