Orange Digger Wasp
Ellura
Smokey-feather Digger Wasp
Dorsal, Wings Closed
 
                      
Smokey-feather Digger Wasp (Sphex fumipennis)Class: Animals (Animalia) - Jointed Legs (Arthropoda) - Insects (Insecta)
Order: Ant Bee Wasps (Hymenoptera)
Family: Mud Dauber & Sand Wasp (Wasp: Sphecidae)     iNaturalist Observation
Species: Smokey-feather Digger Wasp (Sphex fumipennis)
This Photo:     🔍Dorsal, Wings Open🔎

General Species Information:
Found on Ellura (in the Murray Mallee, SA) and elsewhere
These vary dramatically in size between 19 & 28mm (of the 3 we measured). Some of this may be due to gender, but we haven't been able to separate them; so may not be.
In the field they clearly have a dark blue sheen to their wings, but in the studio (as you can see) they look dark brown.
A simple diagnostic with these is their wings go from mainly dark to almost completely clear at the tips. Unfortunately the one we caught has damaged wing tips; but there's enough info there to see the colour has faded.
Notice the thick, pale hair on the inside of the hind tibia's.
Thank you to Ian Gibbins for the binomial name translation. He said "fumipennis = smokey feather => what the wing looks like... the number of 'n's matters".
We have photographed 7 individuals between Dec & Feb (ie summer flying).

Copyright © 2021-2022 Brett & Marie Smith. All Rights Reserved. Photographed 12-Dec-2021
This species is an Australian Native Species, not listed in the SA Murray Mallee Survey of 2010.