I’m on the road right now, so why not enjoy this beautiful photo of one of my favorite groups of insects! The Chrysididae are a group of parasitic wasps that are harmless to humans, and wonderfully beautiful with their punctate, shiny exoskeletons.  They are also sometimes called Emerald Wasps, for obvious reasons.

There is an entire website devoted to this group of wasps, and they have some AMAZING photos.  This lovely photo used courtesy of smccan; thanks!

Posted by Gwen Pearson

Writer. Nerd. Insect Evangelist. Have you heard the good news? BUGS!


  1. These are also one of my favourite families. It has been a long-term goal of mine to get a decent macro-photograph of one of these. I have just never managed it. The little blighters never sit seem to still long enough for me.

  2. I admit to have largely given up on getting in-situ macro pictures with my camera (the several seconds of shutter lag makes it practically impossible for anything except things that stay still most of the time, like caterpillars and spiders). One thing that works OK is to get a sheet of thick rubber, cut a hole in it, and put a microscope slide on each side, making a chamber with optically flat glass on both sides. Then once I get a critter into the hole, it is at least constrained to run around in the area I can see with my camera rather than running out of the field of view all the time.

    The next thing I’m going to try is a disposable plastic cuvette from a spectrophotometer – it has two flat sides to photograph through, and is water-tight so I can put aquatic specimens into it.

  3. That’s a cool idea, Tim!

  4. Thanks for the lovely pic. I’m also loving the strategem for getting the uncooperative critters confined long enough to get a decent photo courtesy of Tim. My moth trap is in other respects a lovely size, but…

  5. Ooh,shiny!

    Parasitoids are way cool. My students were fascinated/grossed out when I explained them earlier this week.


  6. Now here’s a blog that might actually make me like bugs. Actually I like most bugs, ‘cept roaches.

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