Wasp larvae in mason bee tubes yields newly hatched adults.

2015-12-22wasplarve2When cleaning out the mason bee tubes and recovering cocoons in the winter, I came across several tubes which had been completely colonized by another species of bee/wasp. Images and comments on this can be found in this post:

So now I am trying to get this species identified and will update when I find out. June 6 post shows the identification

Unidentified wasp/bee :Currently under inquiry with the experts.


At first I thought these were the paper wasps as they held their wings outspread but the image below of those wasps from the Polistinae family shows a completely different body pattern. Dr. Matthias Buck of the Royal Edmonton Museum is working on samples of these to do DNA sequencing.


Mason Bee (Blue Orchard Bee) tube cleaning and unidentified wasp larvae.

Successful mud-filled tubes of Mason bees.

masonbeewasptubeThe photo above is of one of the better colonized box of tubes from the summer of 2015. Each mud-sealed tube in this box will contain on average 5 mason bee cocoons.

In the lower section of the box shown below, several mud plugs are of lighter colour and a smoother texture. I have found that these ones are colonized completely by another bee, I thought they may probably be resin bees , but now I have found out they are from the Subfamily Eumeninae (Potter and Mason Wasps):

SeeĀ  hatched bee/wasp imagesĀ  in May 1/2016 post: http://www.gfletcher.ca/?p=1538

When the tubes from several boxes which had the light coloured mud plugs were split open they appear as in the photo below.

In opening my tubes for cleaning in the winter, I saved several tubes which are probably resin bees which are also pollinators. I have saved these in a separate container to see what hatches from them. Resin bees hatch when the weather gets warmer in later summer. That’s why these are still in the larval stage.

Other postings on parasites