It had another insect in its grasp that it seemed to be transporting somewhere. With a lot of help from the "What's That Bug" website, we identified it as the cricket hunter ~ and the insect in tow was a cricket which had been paralyzed by the sting of its captor. The cricket hunter was transporting its victim to a burrow it had dug in the soil or sand. Once dragged to the bottom of the burrow by the female, a single egg is laid on the now defenseless cricket. The burrow is then sealed up, and the cricket hunter repeats this process by digging another burrow and finding another cricket. Eventually, the cricket hunter egg develops into a larva and survives by eating the parasitized, and typically still living, cricket or grasshopper. The following summer, after pupation has occured, an adult steel blue cricket hunter will emerge from the burrow to start the cycle again.
|The steel blue cricket hunter enjoying some nectar from my garden|
More information can be found on the cricket hunter at the following websites: