Potter  (or Mason) Wasp Excavating a Hole  (four photos)
Family Vespidae
Subfamily Eumeninae

potter or mason wasp
When I first spotted this female wasp, she was digging a hole in a log near the
Mirror Lake Highway in Summit County, Utah. I thought she was something
like a Blackjacket but she was indeed a Potter or Mason Wasp.  I didn't even
know they
excavated their own holes in wood.  © Carol Davis 7-27-2017

potter or mason wasp
            excavating in wood
This is a photo I got of her coming out (or going into the hole) and
the picture below shows what she looked like when she emerged. 
What a mess!  © Carol Davis 7-27-2017

messy wasp
I still couldn't tell what kind of wasp she was at this point because she
was so dirty. She was a little nervous with us standing around her (about 5
or 6 feet away), but she always went back to digging.  Below is a photo
of the hole.  © Carol Davis 7-27-2017

wasp hole
I can't image how long it took to dig this hole. She might have started with
some other insect's excavation and just finished it off.  According to the
book Solitary Wasps: Behavior and Natural History by Kevin M. O'Neill,
there are three known species that nest in rotting wood. ©Carol Davis 7-27-2017

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