Thread-waisted Wasp  (four photos)
possibly Ammophila procera


Ammophila procera
I spotted this beautiful wasp in Wasatch Mountain State Park,
Wasatch County, Utah.  It was hard to track as it flew from
bush to bush, even though it was of a good size.
Take a look
at those impressive mandibles.  © Carol Davis 7-16-2018

impressive jaws
Females use these mandibles to move dirt and rocks from their
 ground nest and to assist in carrying caterpillars that provide
 food for their hatched young. © Carol Davis 7-16-2018

Thread-waisted Wasp
After the wasp finally landed on the ground, it closed its mandibles.
In the first two photos, it looked like it was displaying or had seen
another wasp in the area and was trying to ward it off with a show
of its jaws. Just  a guess, no facts. In the photo below, I was
kind of surprised to see how easily it could bend its abdomen
into an 90 degree angle. © Carol Davis 7-16-2018

wasp bending its abdomen
"Watch out, here I come!" These wasps rarely sting unless
provoked. For more information on Ammophila wasps,
 please read the wonderful book, Bees, Wasps and Ants by
Eric Grissell. Also, visit Bugguide. © Carol Davis 7-16-2018

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