25th January 2017
A new to Britain wasp, Isodontia meixcana (de Saussure), known as the Grass-carrying wasp, has been discovered at Greenwich Peninsula Ecology Park.
About 2cm long, it is a striking addition to the UK fauna and gets its name from its habit of using grass as nest material.
It likes to visit flowers such as Mint and Gypsy wort, which are abundant at the Greenwich park, and preys on bush crickets, which are also common at the site.
Researcher David Notton of the Natural History Museum said the wasp is pretty docile and a solitary species, so does not form large nests.
“It’s quite unlike the better known and aggressive yellow/black social wasps with which people may be familiar.
“We don’t know how it got to the UK, and although it’s a non-native invasive species there’s no evidence to suggest it’s a threat to UK fauna.”
The full scientific paper on Isodontia meixcana (de Saussure) is available at: www.researchgate.net/publication/312525668_Grass-carrying_wasp_Isodontia_mexicana_de_Saussure_genus_and_species_new_to_Britain_Hymenoptera_Sphecidae
The Nordic walking here is great for getting you fit. We do a three mile route through the woodlands and you feel top of the world when you've finished.
Tom and Jean, Bentley Community Woodlands
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