Abispa sp Click to enlarge image
Australian Hornet, Abispa sp, A mudnesting or potter wasp Image: unknown
© Australian Museum

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Genus
    Paralastor
    Subfamily
    Eumeninae
    Family
    Vespidae
    Super Family
    Vespoidea
    Suborder
    Apocrita
    Order
    Hymenoptera
    Class
    Insecta
    Subphylum
    Uniramia
    Phylum
    Arthopoda
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    1.5 cm

Introduction

The potter wasps are closely related to the paper wasps. However, potter wasps do not form colonies.

Habitat

Potter wasps live in woodlands, heath and urban areas.

Distribution

Potter wasps are found throughout Australia.

Feeding and diet

Potter wasps are solitary, and feed on flower nectar and hunt caterpillars to feed their larvae.

Life history cycle

Potter wasps make mud nests for their eggs and larvae or use abandoned burrows of other insects. They stock the nests with caterpillars and other grubs, which they seal in with mud. These are eaten alive by the wasp larvae.

Danger to humans

Potter wasps have the potential to deliver painful stings, but are not aggressive and rarely attack humans. An ice pack may be used to relieve the pain of the sting. If there is evidence of an allergic reaction, medical attention should be sought.